Ryder cup too close to call, claims Tiger Woods


I was a golfer before I'd ever heard of Tiger Woods - the pro at the local muni took pity on the skinny teenager with empty pockets - but Tiger Woods made me a golf fan.

A year ago, Xander Schauffele won the Tour Championship and Justin Thomas, the runner-up, won the FedEx Cup.

While Woods has yet to taste a tournament victory this year, Monahan said the former world number one had nevertheless had a huge impact, boosting television ratings and indirectly raising the profile of other players on tour.

The 25-year-old will make his debut at the 30-man finale at Atlanta's East Lake Golf Club on Thursday, where the top-five seeds on the standings can automatically claim the FedEx Cup with a Tour Championship victory.

"It's definitely not a bombers course; anyone can win here", Smith said.

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He and Fowler led by one stroke from fellow American Gary Woodland and England's world number one Justin Rose. "Yeah, it's something in my career that I definitely want to accomplish, and I think it's a big milestone, and I'm looking forward to the challenge this week where I've got a chance to do it".

"For us as Americans, Thanksgiving is a very important time of the year for us".

The radical changes to the season-ending FedEx Cup include the points leader being given a two-shot "head start" in the Tour Championship. Bookmakers give him the fifth-shortest odds to win at East Lake.

East Lake is only part of the reward.

"That takes a lot off stress next year because you can pick and choose your events for the whole season and tailor it to peaking around the majors", Smith said. I've come close in a couple events and it's about putting it together at the right time. I didn't know how many tournaments I'd play in and the next [thing] you know I'm here in the Tour Championship. It was tough watching them celebrate, ' he said.

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Woods, 42, has acknowledged that winning is more hard than it has ever been with the amount of young talent on Tour. Woods will be on the charter Sunday night to France for his first Ryder Cup since 2012.

"I've never had it happen, it just kind of popped up". The beginning of the year was such an unknown, I didn't know if I would be able to make it to Florida and to play the Florida Swing. It could be any of those facets of the game, and I just haven't putt it all together at the same time. "That's something that'll hopefully come together this week". Injuries prevented Woods from playing many tournaments in 2014 and 2015, and he didn't play at all in 2016, so it's a little weird seeing him back.

Now, Woods is even fielding questions about whether he can envision representing the United States at the Olympics in Tokyo in two years.

"I'm excited to have an opportunity to do something that no one has ever done, which is pretty cool", Thomas said. "To have worked my way back to that point".

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