Ryder Cup - Woods relishing chance to save season

Reuters - Tue, 07 Sep 19:24:00 2010

Despite a tumultuous year on and off the course for Tiger Woods, the world number one will have one more chance for golfing glory after being named as one of four wildcard picks for next month's Ryder Cup.

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Woods, who failed to gain automatic selection for the biennial team competition after struggling to find his form for much of this year, was selected by US Captain Corey Pavin to compete in his sixth Ryder Cup.

"It's great to be a part of this team," Woods said after Pavin announced his picks to round out the 12-man team.

"I'm honoured to be selected and head over to Wales to represent the United States in the Ryder Cup."

Woods, winless this season after 11 starts on the PGA Tour, has begun to show signs he is regaining his form with a tie for 12th at The Barclays and tying for 11th at the Deutsche Bank Championship -- the first two events of the FedExCup playoffs.

"There are signs my game has been coming around working with Sean (swing coach Foley)," the 34-year-old Woods said.

"I'm hitting some better shots. Things are starting to transition there, and I feel like my game is not very far away and that makes it a lot easier going into a pressure-packed environment like that knowing that my game is coming around."

Revelations of Woods's sordid string of infidelities led to a self-imposed five-month exile from the golf circuit and led to his divorce last month.

"A couple of months ago I was trying to make the team on points, but I didn't," noted Woods, who has a 10-13-2 record in Ryder Cup action.

"The last two events I played, I played much better and here we are. I think my game is not that far away.

"Whether I was a person who was picked or a person who earned their way on the squad, it doesn't change the overall goal, it's still the same. That's to go over there and win."

Pavin was asked if he had any doubts about Woods, whose struggles included a rare missed cut and the worst US PGA Tour performance of his career at Firestone Country Club, where he closed with a 77 for an 18-over-par total, his highest 72-hole aggregate.

"What I was trying to do was just try not to form any opinions until almost this weekend," Pavin said.

"I didn't want to burden myself with over-thinking this, so I just waited and waited and waited. Obviously I was pleased to see him playing better, certainly.

"Did I ever have any doubt? I didn't think about it very much. I just waited to see how he was going to play."

The US will take on the European team at the Celtic Manor resort in Wales from October 1-3.

Reuters

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