Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods is playing his 13th event of 2018. In this picture, oods reacts after making birdie on the 18th green during World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational - Round One at Firestone Country Club South Course on Aug. 2, 2018 in Akron, Ohio. Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Tiger Woods was not at his best in the first round of the World Golf Championships – Bridgestone Invitational played at the Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio, but still managed to post a score of 4-under 66.

The American golfer managed to hit just seven fairways in his first round of which six came in as many holes at the start of his round after that he managed just one in the next 12 holes. He also missed a couple of easy short birdie putts, but he did land a 50-footer for birdie at the 18th green and a 30-footer in the 13th.

Woods is currently tied for 14th place, four shots behind clubhouse leader Ian Poulter, who shot an 8-under 62. Despite his struggles, the 14-time major winner admits it is these kind of rounds that help win a tournament.

“It's nice to shoot rounds like I did at The Open and like I did today, put together rounds where I may not feel the best but I'm able to post a score,'' Woods said after his round Thursday, as quoted by ESPN. "That's how you win golf tournaments. You're not going to have your best all four days and it's a matter of that bad day being 2, 3 under par instead of being, 2, 3 over par. Today I certainly wasn't as sharp as I wanted it to be, but I shot 4 under par today.''

The 43-year-old has won the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational eight times in the past and his last win on the PGA Tour came on the same course in 2013. It was also the seventh time he put up a score of 66 or better in the first round at this tournament; Woods won five of the previous six events.

The tournament in Akron this week is Woods’ 13th event of the year following his return from a back injury that required spinal fusion surgery in 2017. Rory McIlroy, who is tied seventh after posting a 5-under 65, admitted it was a surprise to see Woods playing this well so soon.

“I didn’t think that the progress would be this fast,” McIlroy said, as per USA Today. “I thought it was going to take a little bit longer, but I guess when you’re sort of born with it, you have a knack for getting yourself in there and giving yourself a chance. I guess it never leaves you.”

The American golf legend is coming into the tournament following a strong showing at the Open Championships in Scotland, where he finished tied sixth — his best in a major since an identical finish at the 2013 Open Championship at Muirfield. After the event, Woods took a vacation in Europe and as per ESPN, did not touch a golf club until Tuesday this week.

"It's managing my practice sessions,'' Woods, who is set to play five tournaments in the next six weeks added. “I want to practice a lot, I want to figure it out, I want to get better, and I want to be ready. But then again, I have to manage this as quite a bit of golf I'm going to ask my body to go through at tournament speed for basically the next almost two months.”

"I've got to manage that and really make sure I take it easy in my practice sessions and make sure I'm ready for the tournament rounds.''

Woods, however, is completely focused on the event at the Firestone Country Club as he is aware he is in with a shout at winning — it will be his first since 2013. There are number of players bunched in together, but he admitted he needs to be sharper going into the second round on Friday.

“Tomorrow,” Woods said, “I’ve got to go get it.”