U.S. Open 2019: Tiger Woods gets honest about the shape he was in at Bethpage

June 11, 2019

Just last month, Tiger Woods arrived in New York for the second major of the year, the PGA Championship, with zero competitive reps since his triumphant Masters victory in April. He didn’t appear at Bethpage Black at all on the Wednesday before the tournament began, which set tongues wagging about the state of his health and game.

Woods opened with a 72 on Thursday at Bethpage, and followed up with a 73 to miss the cut. Woods didn’t compete again until the Memorial, where he silenced his critics with a final round of five under par to finish T-9.

But at his pre-tournament press conference ahead of the year’s third major championship, the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach, Tiger was asked to go into detail about what was ailing him in New York.

“You kind of alluded to this a few times about how you were feeling at Bethpage,” a reporter began. “What was going on? Were you just physically sick or maybe just not as limber?”

“Yeah, all the above,” Woods replied.

The reporter pressed. “You had a cold or something?”

“I was in rough shape,” Woods said.

The next question changed the subject, but later on in the press conference the conversation once again turned to how Tiger felt heading into the week at Bethpage.

“I was good going into the week,” Woods said. “Unfortunately just didn’t feel well.”

Luckily for Tiger fans, though the Big Cat opted to rest on Tuesday at Pebble, he feels pretty good this week overall.

“I feel like I’m trending in the right direction,” he said. “I need one more day of prep. I want to see the golf course when it’s a little bit closer to game time. I don’t want to — I know they’re holding it back. But I just want to see how much are they going to let it go and show us how it’s going to be come Thursday.”

Tiger is seeking his fourth U.S. Open title and 16th major championship this week. He tees off at 5:09 p.m. ET on Thursday alongside Jordan Spieth and Justin Rose.

To receive GOLF’s all-new newsletters, subscribe for free here.