Tiger leads US to fifth consecutive Presidents Cup
By Jim Slater ,AFPCOLUMBUS -- Tiger Woods clinched the Presidents Cup for the third time in a row on Sunday, leading the Americans to an 18 1/2-15 1/2 victory over the Internationals at rain-soaked Muirfield Village.
October 8, 2013, 12:08 am TWN
World number one Woods edged 41st-ranked Richard Sterne of South Africa 1 up to secure the trophy, thwarting an Internationals fightback and boosting the Americans to 8-1-1 in the overall rivalry with their fifth win in a row.
“It feels good,” Woods said. “It was a tough day, tough conditions, rain, wind all around. It was a long week, but it was worth it.”
Battling nagging back spasms over the final five holes, 14-time major winner Woods won the par-3 16th with a par, chipped from the rough to inches from the hole at 17 and halved 18 for the victory.
“(My back) went out on me at 14 and from then on it just kept getting worse. We played a lot of holes the last couple days so a lot of our guys are dinged up and unfortunately I was one of them.”
Woods is a five-time winner of the U.S. PGA Memorial tournament, which is played at Muirfield Village, and he went 4-1 in Cup matches, improving his overall singles record in Ryder and Presidents Cup to 10-3-2.
His victory put the hosts up by four with only two matches remaining on a course that saw heavy rain for the fourth day in a row, forcing lift, clean and place rules to be used.
“We've all slogged it out and did our best,” said 2013 Masters champion Adam Scott of Australia.
It was the third triumph for Fred Couples as the U.S. captain, all having ended with Woods taking the winning point.
“Three in a row and Tiger has the winning point all three times — that's pretty good,” Couples said.
Couples is not planning to guide the team again in 2015 when the event will be played in South Korea.
“A three-peat is good enough for me,” Couples said.
Internationals captain Nick Price was proud of his team's rally, winning four matches in a row with the U.S. on the brink of clinching to create some late drama.
“We're a real hodgepodge team that came from the four corners of the world and gave the might of America a run for their money,” Price said.
“They all played incredibly well. They tried their hardest and I'm proud to be their captain.”