DeChambeau makes the most of moving day
Norton, MA- Bryson DeChambeau grew up idolizing Tiger Woods. The 24 year old rising star followed him through youth and teenage years. On Sunday’s third round at the Dell Technologies Championship, DeChambeau got to play a round with his boyhood hero. It surpassed his expectation “I was nervous, for sure…” he said after, reflecting on the round.
If he was nervous, he did not show it by his play. DeChambeau outplayed his boyhood idol on the day. He birdied the first two holes and collected two more before the turn on 6 and 7. Tiger carded three birdies on the front, but missed critical opportunities. He missed a nine foot birdie attempt on four and didn’t get many more close birdie putts on the front.
Both players stumbled on the back. Tiger parred the first three holes before he three putted 13 to drop down the board. He stabilized with pars on four straight holes and ended his day well, birdieing 18. Woods finished the day -3 and -7 for the tournament, six strokes off the lead. “I didn’t get a lot out of my round today. I gave myself quite a few looks today. I was trying to be a little more aggressive today on the greens and trying to make sure that I gave it a good hit.”
While Tiger broke even on the back, Bryson shot up the board late. He birdied 14, then had a bad time on 15. A poor drive led to a bogey. But for the closing holes, he locked in. DeChambeau birdied 16 and 17 then saved his best for 18. He blasted a 237 yard shot with a five-iron within 23 inches for a tap in eagle putt. The late flurry put DeChambeau at -12, tied for second on the leader board with Tyrell Hatton.
Concerning the shot on 18, “I had no clue it was that close. I heard the crowd get louder and louder, and I looked up and finally saw the ball peak up over that hill. ‘Oh it’s like a foot. Sweet!’ It was nice to be able to tap in a putt for eagle. It’s never a bad way to finish off a round.”
Both players enjoyed playing with each other. DeChambeau was happy to live out a childhood dream, and matched his competitiveness. “He’s been really nice to me. We’re still intense and wanted to beat each others’ brains out. But at the same point of time, it was golf at the end of the day. In between shots we’re talking, having a good time. It was fun to play for him.”
Tiger enjoyed the day as much as Bryson. “He’s fantastic to play with. Two friends going out there competing and playing. And we both have jobs to do today and try to shoot as low rounds as we possibly could do today. And he did that, he shot 8-under today. And it was great playing.”
Woods will tee off tomorrow, Labor Day, for his final round at 12:15 alongside Brooks Koepka. DeChambeau will go in the final group for the second consecutive week. He and 54 hole leader Abraham Ancer tee off at 1:45.