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Tiger Woods might have a new putter


 
 SAN FRANCISCO, Aug 6: Tiger Woods appears to have something new in store for this PGA Championship: his putter.

 Woods has won all but one of his 15 majors with a Scotty Cameron Newport 2 GSS, the putter he borrowed from Mark O’Meara in 1998 and never returned. The only other time he switched at a major was at St. Andrews in 2010, when he used a Nike Method.

Woods has experimented with other putters since then, such as a TaylorMade variety in 2018 before going back to his regular putter at the Tour Championship, which he won.

This week he has been working with a putter just like his Cameron Newport but with adjustable weights in the sole to adjust to green speeds. Golf Channel reported it would be in the bag on Thursday, and Woods used it during a practice round on Wednesday with Steve Stricker and Davis Love III.

“It’s basically the same putter with a little bit more flexibility,” Stricker said.

“He’s able to change the weights around a little bit, but the length is the difference. He’s got a little more length on there, and that’s just so he can practice a little bit more without back pain. That’s what excites him the most is that he was able to put in a lot of time with this putter. And watching him putt, it looked exactly the same to me. He rolled the ball great.”

Notah Begay III, a longtime friend who now works as an analyst for NBC and Golf Channel, said Woods was looking “to create some new sensations in his hands.”

“The extra weight might give him something to at least work on and focus as he tries to find that putting stroke,” Begay said.

Will he make the switch? And if he does, for how long? “I promise you, old faithful is back at the place where he is staying right now,” Begay said on Golf Channel. “It is not far away.”

This is the second straight year the PGA Championship is being held on a public golf course, from Bethpage Black on Long Island, New York, to the TPC Harding Park in San Francisco. Both have reasonable rates favourable to local residents.

The going rates for Harding Park next week: USD 80 for San Francisco residents, USD 200 for Bay Area residents and $300 for everyone else. At Bethpage Black, weekday rates are USD 65 for New York residents and USD 130 for those out-of-state, though getting a tee time can mean sleeping in the car overnight to get in line. “We’re always going to go to private courses because some of the private courses are some of the best in the world, and they’re courses that test the top players,” Rory McIlroy said.

“But at the same time, it’s very refreshing that we do come to places like here, Bethpage, Torrey Pines. It is important to let the public see us on golf courses that they’ve played before, that are accessible for them, that aren’t too expensive to get on.” That led to a question: When was the last time McIlroy paid to play?

“Valderrama, 2005,” he said, adding that he paid 250 euros. – AP

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