Monday, July 24, 2006

Tiger Woods Wins; Father Smiling From Above [J. Mark English]

Damon Hack, New York Times --

It was dinnertime in Britain when Tiger Woods appeared at Royal Liverpool Golf Club’s final bend, a hole that borders a row of modest homes on a street called Stanley Road. On the stoops out front and in second-floor windows, the locals gathered to bathe in the summer light while watching the last moments of a command performance in a year filled with personal upheaval.
When Woods rattled in a short putt for par to win the 135th British Open on Sunday by two strokes over Chris DiMarco, he punched the air with both hands, then buried his face in the shoulder of his caddie, Steve Williams. For 15 seconds, Woods’s body heaved as he cried in front of the grandstands.
“After my last putt, I realized that my dad is never going to see this again,” Woods said after winning his first tournament since his father, Earl, died of cancer on May 3. “I wish he could have seen this one more time.”
In a final-round tussle in which he never lost the lead, Woods carded a five-under-par 67 to win the 11th professional major championship of his career. He is tied with Walter Hagen and is seven short of the record held by Jack Nicklaus, his childhood hero.