COMMENTARY | To say that Tiger Woods had a disappointing week at the 2013 US Open would be an understatement.
Undoubtedly the best player in the world, Woods seemed to shuffle his way around Merion Golf Club with the mentality and the confidence of a child looking for a lost puppy. He never looked comfortable on the course during any of the four championship rounds, often resorting to risky swings in ankle-deep rough to blast his golf ball back into play. He even managed to tweak an elbow injury after one particularly-violet slash through rough that many players called excessively punitive.
The result? A final round 74 that translated into a finishing score of 13-over par.
"There's always a lesson to be learned in every tournament whether you win or lose," Woods told reporters following his final round. "I'll look back at the things I did right and the things I did wrong. … I did a lot of things right. Unfortunately, I did a few things wrong."
Gee Tiger; you think?
Unfortunately for the World No.1, 'doing a few things wrong' has become a redundant anthem since Woods' last major triumph.
He has not won a major championship since the 2008 US Open at Torrey Pines. He's now 0-for-2 in 2013, meaning the two courses that held Tiger's best chance at victory - Augusta National and the short Merion -- have come and gone. All that remains this season are Muirfield for the British Open and Oak Hill Country Club for the PGA Championship.
In 2002, Woods finished T-28 at Muirfield which included a spellbinding 81 in his third round. In 2003, Woods had a similar showing at Oak Hill Country Club at the PGA Championship, finishing T-39 with the likes of Hal Sutton and Joe Durant. Needless to say, Woods does not enjoy the next two major venues.
Thus, if history has taught us anything, we are presented with the likelihood that Woods will not win a major championship this season. Who would have thought such a thing could be possible for a man who already had four wins on the PGA Tour by June?
In many ways, Woods has become his own worst enemy. In years past he has famously stated that all he cares about is winning major titles, hoping to one day eclipse the record (18 major titles) of his long-time idol Jack Nicklaus. Regardless of what he may say to reporters when asked about achieving this goal, it is easy to see that the record has become an obsession of sorts for Woods. You can tell just by watching him live and die on every shot while playing a major.
This past week, we saw more grimaces and scowls on Tiger's face than smiles and exuberance. We saw frustration, anguish and even physical pain as he stumbled to another disappointing major championship finish.
Even more importantly, we saw a man who knows his window at golf immortality is quickly closing.
Adam Fonseca has been covering professional golf since 2005. His work can also be seen on the Back9Network. He currently lives in Chicago with his wife. Follow Adam on Twitter at @chicagoduffer.
- Sports & Recreation
- Tiger Woods
- Merion Golf Club