Rory McIlroy Back In Contention At The Wells Fargo After Birthday Calamity

Tiger Woods

"I hit a few good drives down the middle".

The dismal effort left McIlroy just a shot inside the three-over cut line and trailing well behind little-known American Paul Malnati, who added a 68 to his first round 67 to lead at seven under.

Of all the places to watch the Wells Fargo Championship, one little boy advises anywhere in the shade.

A disappointing day, though, for his old rival Phil Mickelson, who shot a mediocre 72.

Despite the change, Woods still has 64 putts through the last two rounds. His only blemish on the back nine came at the final hole.

He didn't panic when he was 1 over through the tough six holes at the start, or when he failed to birdie either of the next two holes that are the easiest for scoring on the front.

"I've struggled with the greens being as slow as they are", Woods said. "Obviously, I would never be bothered to win a golf tournament out here". He had missed his previous two cuts at Quail Hollow, in 2010 and 2012.




"Quail Hollow PGA is definitely a lot harder not only because it's a major, but because it's a different grass", said Day, who could move back into the top 10 in the World Ranking with a victory on Sunday. "There's going to be probably, I'm guessing, 15 guys or so with a chance on Sunday". But it got to the point where [his wife] Erica had to drag me out of the house and say, 'OK, we're going to go do something'. Of course, ending with a three-putt bogey didn't help.

Malnati dropped out of contention with a four-over 75 which included an out-of-bounds double-bogey at the seventh and another double-bogey at the 12th.

Tiger Woods (-1) and Graeme McDowell (-2) were also undone by the 18th, the Ulsterman carding a double bogey at the last to scupper what had been a terrific bogey-free, six-birdie round through the first 17 holes.

Though a closing bogey followed on the last, a -5 round 66 puts McIlroy back in the hunt for his second Wells Fargo win. I would take one of those tournaments right now if you gave them to me. What really pleased him was a 7-iron from 195 yards to pin-high on the par-3 17th, and the birdie putt he made from just inside 30 feet.

"JT asked me after his round on Thursday if I had any of my backups with me", Fowler said.

Chasing a career grand slam, McIlroy began the final round at Augusta National three shots off the lead and closed to within a shot of eventual victor Patrick Reed after two holes, but faded to close with a 74. I just like being at home and I like being around my family and friends more than I like chasing it around here.

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