Date: August 08, 2007

Tiger set to charge at Tulsa

Tiger Woods is looking to salvage his season at this week&aposs USPGA Championship at Southern Hills in Tulsa. The world number one has won four times this year – his latest victory coming at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational at Akron on Sunday – but none of those have been in majors. Those are the only tournaments which really count for Woods, who is defending his USPGA title this week. “Golf-wise it&aposs been pretty good but not great,” said Woods, who has eight top-10 finishes this year, won more than $ 10 million (AUD) and not missed a cut. “I just think the major championships are valued that highly, and I&aposve come close. I just haven&apost gotten it done yet.” Woods grabbed a share of the lead early on Sunday at both the Masters and US Open but was unable to make a final push as Zach Johnson and Angel Cabrera both went on to win their first majors. He was then off the pace at Carnoustie defending his Open crown, finishing 12th as Padraig Harrington finally broke his major duck. With three first-time winners making their mark on this season&aposs majors the suggestion is Woods is finally facing a concerted challenge to his decade of domination of the sport. “It makes it even more challenging to win major championships,” he said. “You don&apost have the same collection of guys any more. We&aposre seeing new faces springing up and this year is an example of that.” Whether another new challenger steps up this week or Woods collects major number 13, it will be done on a tough course against a stacked field. A total of 98 of the top 100 players in the world are present in Tulsa to take on a 7,131-yard, par-70 layout where temperatures are expected to hover around 100 degrees all week. “Each and every year this is the deepest field we play in all year,” Woods said. “Generally its 98, 97 of the top-100 or so that are here. On top of that Kerry Haigh (USPGA managing director) does a great job of setting up the course and making it fair. He makes it difficult but he makes it fair.” “I think that lends itself to more guys being in contention, and more guys at the top of the board, which makes for good theatre.” Woods was understandably boosted by Sunday&aposs runaway victory at Firestone County Club where he won for the sixth time and was the only player under par when the tournament was over. “Made some nice strides last week, headed in the right direction and really looking forward to this week,” said the world number one. “That&aposs why you go to an event, to win. I don&apost go there to just show up and I&aposm not here to work on my farmer tan and shed a couple of pounds.” “You go out to win period. That&aposs why I&aposm here. The whole idea is to win. That&aposs it.