Tiger rocks Augusta but five others share lead


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AUGUSTA: Tiger Woods thrilled Augusta Nationwide by leaping into rivalry in Friday's second spherical of the Masters, firmly placing himself within the hunt for a historic 15th main title and fifth inexperienced jacket.

The 43-year-old American celebrity fired a dramatic four-under par 68 to share sixth place on six-under 138 via 36 holes, one stroke behind a document Masters lead logjam of 5 co-leaders -- all of them main winners -- on seven-under 137.

"It was enjoyable," Woods stated. "I felt like I left a number of photographs on the market. It was a strong day. I attempted to grind it on the market."

Reigning British Open champion Francesco Molinari, final yr's British Open and PGA Championship winner Brooks Koepka, Australians Jason Day and Adam Scott and South African Louis Oosthuizen all shared the halfway lead.

However their feats have been all eclipsed by Woods, who signaled he can be a menace to seize his first main title because the 2008 US Open and first Masters title since 2005 -- astonishing after years of knee and again accidents that made him doubt if he would ever play competitively once more.

"After three knee surgical procedures and 4 again surgical procedures, I am nice," Woods stated.

Woods returned from spinal fusion surgical procedure final yr and contended on the British Open and PGA Championship then snapped a five-year US PGA Tour win drought on the Tour Championship and stretched his comeback story once more Friday with no well being points after nice play on one among golf's largest levels.

"The final two main championships I have been proper there," Woods stated. "Swiftly I am right here on the Masters."

Whereas Woods settled for being in a pack one adrift with second-ranked Dustin Johnson, fellow American Xander Schauffele and South African Justin Harding, there was little question he was the star to crowds glued to his each transfer.

After two early birdies and a bogey, Woods missed an eight-foot par putt on the par-5 eighth gap and appeared destined for an unspectacular spherical.

What adopted was classic Woods and introduced again chilling roars harkening to his 1997 "Tigermania" first main win.

Woods sank a 37-foot birdie putt on the ninth, dropped in a 13-footer for birdie at 11, then lipped out a birdie probability on the par-Three 12th after a storm delay.

At 14, Woods escaped timber left of the green, put his strategy to 28 ft and holed the testy putt to succeed in five-under.

After Woods hit his second shot, a safety guard slipped on muddy floor and slid into Woods's proper foot, inflicting a couple of fearful moments earlier than the celebrity examined his ankle and walked on unhurt.

"It's what it's," Woods stated. "Accidents occur. We transfer on. I am good."

On the par-5 15th, Woods curled in a 30-footer for birdie, punctuated with a proper fist pump to place himself one stroke off the lead.

His 5 putts produced from past 20 ft over two days are two greater than any rival.

Woods missed an eight-foot birdie putt to par 17 and missed a 14-footer for birdie at 18.

That left him simply shy of the most important co-leader pack ever after 36 holes on the Masters, the 5 yet one more than in 2017 and 1973 -- every time the eventual winner coming from the highest foursome.

Oosthuizen made seven birdies in capturing a 66. Day fired 67 after tweaking his again Thursday.

Seventh-ranked Molinari fired a bogey-free 67, the bottom rating of his 26 profession rounds at Augusta Nationwide, the place his greatest end was a share of 19th in 2012.

"It was a strong time without work the tee, hit the ball nicely," Molinari stated. "Hit some high quality iron photographs and once I missed I missed them in the fitting spot."

Scott, the 2013 Masters champion, eagled the par-5 15th to succeed in eight-under however a bogey at 16 dropped him again into the pack.

"I put myself in a very good place for the weekend," Scott stated. "I am in a great spot to sort of run with them."

Koepka fired a 71 regardless of a double-bogey catastrophe on the par-5 second gap, birdies at 15 and 18 salvaging a sub-par spherical.

"Did not precisely really feel snug so it was good to get one at 18 to complete it," he stated.
4-time main champion Rory McIlroy, looking for a inexperienced jacket to finish a profession Grand Slam, fired a 71 to face seven again on 144.
US left-hander Phil Mickelson, who at 48 would turn out to be the oldest main champion in golf historical past with a win, shot 73 in his 100th profession Masters spherical to face three off the lead.
World primary Justin Rose missed the reduce for the primary time in 14 Augusta appearances at 148 after a second-round 73. Sergio Garcia additionally missed the weekend.