Tiger Woods not expected to play any Open prep events




 

Tiger Woods is set to arrive at next month's Open Championship without have played any prep events following his tie for 21st in the US Open.

Woods, 43, has flown out to Thailand for a fortnight's holiday, but will then eschew the opportunity to take in a competitive tournament before Portrush. The tactic will raise eyebrows as Woods skipped straight from his victory at the Masters to the USPGA and ended up missing the cut at Bethpage.

However with family commitments and the belief he requires a rest before embarking on a busy summer that could see him play five times in six weeks, Woods will attempt going back-to-back again. "I'll play at home, yeah," Woods said with a smile when asked if he would play before Northern Ireland's first major in 68 years.

"It's just trying to wind down from the championship as well as [get in the gym] and getting back into it,'' Woods said. "And I know that Florida will not be the same temperature as Northern Ireland. I'm not going to be practising with any sweaters at home, but it will be nice to get to Portrush and get with it again. I've never been there and will need to do my homework."

Woods will take the positives from his best final round at the US Open in 10 years, despite a torrid start to the round. He bogeyed four of the first six holes, but played the last 12 holes in six-under for a 69.

Another member of the world's top five taking optimism from Pebble Beach regardless of his finishing position is England's Justin Rose. He was level with eventual champion Gary Woodland after birdieing the first, but made four bogeys in eight holes from the eighth to struggle to a 74 and a seven-under total in a tie for third. In truth, Rose was labouring with his swing all week and only his short-game rescued him.

"I'm proud of the fact I even gave myself a chance," Rose said. "I didn't have my 'A' game this week. And to contend in a major with no game, really, I take the positive from that."

There were three other Englishmen in the top 15 with Matt Fitzpatrick, Danny Willett and Matt Wallace all on five-under. Rory McIlroy shot a 72 to finish in a tie for ninth and the fact he declined to speak to media afterwards seemed to sum up his verdict on his Sunday.

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