Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Woods primed to end five-year major drought at PGA Championship

August 8, 2013 -- Updated 1211 GMT (2011 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Tiger Woods in good shape to end a five year long major championship drought
  • World No. 1 last won one of golf's four major titles at the U.S. Open in 2008
  • Woods has won five PGA Tour titles in 2013 most recently at Bridgestone Invitational
  • Fourteen-time major champion is happy with form going into US PGA Championship

(CNN) -- It is a regular refrain in the build-up to one of golf's four major championships these days: 'Will this be Tiger's time?'

The world number one has been marooned on 14 majors for over half a decade now, his quest to match Jack Nicklaus' haul of 18 stuck firmly in neutral.

Despite five tournament victories this year on the PGA Tour, he's flattered to deceive when it comes to golf's four bumper tournaments.

In contention at both the Masters and the British Open he faded at the business end, finishing tied sixth and fourth respectively, while injury affected his U.S. Open bid.

Read: Woods romps to seven-shot victory at Firestone

But he arrives for the U.S. PGA Championship at Oak Hill in New York on the back of an emphatic win at the Bridgestone Invitational, finishing seven shots clear of the field.

Mickelson revels in British Open win
New golf course at St. Andrews
Bubba Watson on Tiger Woods

No wonder then that he's content with his form going into the final major of 2013.

Asked at a press conference on Tuesday whether the 15th major is proving the most difficult of his career to snare he replied: "It kind of seems that way. It has been the longest spell that I've had since I hadn't won a major.

"I've certainly had my share of chances to win. I've had my opportunities on the back nine of probably half of those Sundays for the last five years and just haven't won it.

"But the key is to keep giving myself chances and eventually I will start getting them. I'm very pleased with where my game is at."

Given the phenomenal success he's enjoyed so far in 17 years as a professional, it is unsurprising his career has come to be determined by how he performs in the majors.

Coincidentally, it is now also 17 majors he's gone without winning one. But even if he doesn't collect his fifth US PGA title this weekend, he'll still think of his 2013 campaign as a positive one.

"It has been a great year for me so far, winning five times," Woods said. "I think winning one major championship automatically means you had a great year."

Woods has been hard at work honing his short game ahead of Thursday's opening round at Oak Hill, tricky greens forming a big part of the test in Rochester.

Again he turned to his United States Ryder Cup teammate Steve Stricker -- as well as caddy Joe La Cava -- for some tips on how to negotiate the undulating greens.

"There are quite a few subtleties," Woods said. "These little ridges and waves in the greens, a little bit of grain here and there. They are tough. They are tricky to read. I'm sure I'll be calling Joey in on a few putts as well.

The key is to keep giving myself chances. I'm very pleased with where my game is at
Tiger Woods

"A lot of the long putts had double breaks in them. It's going to be important to hit a lot of greens and give yourself opportunities because these are a little bit tricky to read, there's no doubt."

Woods is still the biggest draw at any tournament he attends but he revealed his popularity nearly caused an injury for a young fan in Rochester.

"We had a little girl get crushed," Woods said. "She was just on the ground crying. People get so aggressive for autographs. You try and sign but sometimes the adults start running over the little kids up front."

Read: Mickelson savors 'greatest day'

Meanwhile, the man who won the last major title on offer at the British Open in July -- Phil Mickelson -- is gunning for the sixth of his career.

His inspired run of four birdies in the final six holes at Muirfield delivered Lefty's first British Open title at the 20th attempt. Now he has his sights of the final major of the season.

"I've studied the golf course," Mickelson said. "I know exactly how I'm going to play it. I just need to get my game sharp now."

"You've got to hit fairways. The rough is extremely long and thick, as long and thick a rough as I've seen in a long time."

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
August 8, 2014 -- Updated 1424 GMT (2224 HKT)
From Seve's "spine-shivering" moment to Jack Nicklaus' "perfect explosion," David Cannon has captured many of golf's defining images.
August 7, 2014 -- Updated 1320 GMT (2120 HKT)
They came home as casualties of war -- physically shattered and mentally broken. But golf is proving to be an unlikely salvation for U.S. veterans.
August 5, 2014 -- Updated 1231 GMT (2031 HKT)
You are the one hitting the shots, but the man standing over your shoulder could hold the key to your golfing destiny.
July 21, 2014 -- Updated 1227 GMT (2027 HKT)
PINEHURST, NC - JUNE 10: Rory McIlroy (R) of Northern Ireland talks with his dad Gerry McIlroy (L) during a practice round prior to the start of the 114th U.S. Open at Pinehurst Resort & Country Club, Course No. 2 on June 10, 2014 in Pinehurst, North Carolina. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
He has been there for all three of his son's major wins, but the latest triumph may well have been the sweetest yet for Rory McIlroy's father.
July 9, 2014 -- Updated 1218 GMT (2018 HKT)
The next generation of golfers just keeps on getting younger. "They have the confidence to perform against their idols," says one ex-prodigy.
July 1, 2014 -- Updated 1159 GMT (1959 HKT)
He was Spain's ultimate matador and golf's greatest escape artist.
June 18, 2014 -- Updated 1536 GMT (2336 HKT)
Rory McIlroy has announced he wants to represent Ireland at the Rio Olympics in 2016.
Two-time major champion Rory McIlroy declares he'll represent Ireland at the Rio Olympics, not Great Britain.
April 29, 2014 -- Updated 0248 GMT (1048 HKT)
Already admired by Annika Sorenstam and with a bucketful of talent, New Zealand's Lydia Ko has the world of golf at her feet.
April 28, 2014 -- Updated 1130 GMT (1930 HKT)
Mike O'Connor, UK FootGolf
Like footie? Partial to a bit of golf? Then you'll love FootGolf. The sport's growing fan base includes a host of former English Premier League stars.
April 24, 2014 -- Updated 1343 GMT (2143 HKT)
Golfers at at Barkway Park don't seem to concerned and have been taking pictures and videos of the bird when it appears on the greens and fairways.
A runaway ostrich-like bird hiding near an English golf course has caused quite a stir. Some say it's dangerous, while others are cashing in.
April 22, 2014 -- Updated 1238 GMT (2038 HKT)
Eagles may be thin on the ground for most golfers at the Bear Trace course at Harrison Bay. But up in the treetops, it's a different matter.
April 18, 2014 -- Updated 1754 GMT (0154 HKT)
When someone tells you to go jump in a lake, sometimes it's best to take their advice. "I've never been so scared," says golfer Pablo Larrazabal.
ADVERTISEMENT