Tiger Woods shot a career best round of nine-under 61 in the second round of the WGC Bridgestone on Friday, and catapulted himself to first place heading into the weekend.
Before also tying the Firestone course record, Woods had a chance for the magical number of 59. But after four birdies to start the back nine, Woods struck three straight pars and needed to birdie the last two for history. That was quickly dashed when he made par on the 17th, but par on the 18th looked in doubt when Woods hooked his tee-shot to the right of the fairway behind several trees.
Woods still continued to play a fearless round, shooting into the trees, only to see the ball wind up next to the bleachers to the right of the green. After a legal drop, he set up his long par-saving putt and his career best mark. He has now shot a combined 13-under 127 through two rounds.
All told Woods hit six birdies and an eagle, and used his short game to save par on the sixth and 18th holes.
In line for his eighth career Bridgestone victory, Woods now holds a seven stroke lead over fellow American Keegan Bradley, who finished his second round with a two-under 68. Bradley is tied with England’s Chris Wood for second, with Bill Haas and Swede Henrik Stenson behind them in a tie for fifth at five-under.
Woods bested the entire field in the second round by five shots, the next closest being John Merrick who shot a four-under 66 on the day.
The 37-year-old American started the back nine with four consecutive birdies, and also knocked in an eagle on the par-5 second hole. After a poor tee-shot, Woods would also save the par-4 sixth hole with a chip on his third shot and a 22-foot putt.
The highlights of the second round can be found below.