ATLANTA (AFP) - Tiger Woods edged closer to snapping a five-year winless drought as the 14-time major winner maintained a share of the lead on Friday at the halfway stage of the Tour Championship.
Woods birdied the final hole en route to a 68 to tie Justin Rose (67) at seven-under par 133 in heatwave conditions at the East Lake golf course in Atlanta.
Rory McIlroy, winner two years ago of both the FedEx Cup and Tour Championship, remains in the hunt in sole possession of third after shooting a 68.
“The best way to describe today is I ground out a round,” said Woods, a former two-time winner of the season-ending tournament.
“I wasn’t quite as sharp as I was yesterday, but I hung in there and tried to miss the ball on the correct sides so I had angles.
“For the most part, I did that.”
Woods had been two strokes clear of his rivals before stumbling to a double-bogey on 16.
But the World No. 21 recovered to shoot par on 17 and then sank a two-footer for birdie on 18 to tie his English rival Rose.
Woods’ last victory was in 2013 at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.
He began the round tied at the top with American compatriot Rickie Fowler but soon moved two clear of Fowler who bogeyed the first hole.
He then moved two strokes clear of the elite 30-player field on the back nine with birdies at the par-four 12th and par-four 14th. Woods received the loudest roar from his gallery by holing a 24-foot birdie putt on the par-three 15th.