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February 24, 2018

Tiger Woods

Palm Beach Gardens, Florida

Q. You talk about tweaking and things that needed to be tweaked as you've moved along in your process of getting back into contention to win tournaments. What had to be tweaked after last week and why did it work so well here?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I think that as I've alluded to, I love Riviera. I just don't play well there.

For some reason, the sight lines fit me here. I feel very comfortable here. I'm used to playing in this wind. It's the way it is every day here. But the hardest part is trying to get the ball to go in the hole.

These greens are a little bit tricky and I felt like today, even though I shot 69, it probably the highest score I could have shot today. I really hit it good. Put myself there where I've got a shot going into tomorrow.

Q. Talk about tomorrow. What sort of a number do you think, based on the conditions, based on the forecast, where you are in relation to the leaders, what will it take?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I'm going to have to do something under par for sure. You never know what can happen the last few holes here. A lot of things can happen and have happened in the past.

First of all, I need to go and post a number. I'm going to be far enough ahead of the leaders, probably 45 minutes or an hour; if I can go ahead and post a number early, almost reminiscent so what I did with Rory, you never know, and wait and see what happens.

Q. Another windy day. I thought you looked in control of your game, particularly off the tee.
TIGER WOODS: Well, I think this is probably the highest score I could have shot today. I really, really hit it good. I just didn't get anything to go in there for most of the early part of the round.

I gave myself plenty of looks. I just didn't make anything and I finally made a nice par putt at 12 and made a nice one at 13. You know, somehow posted under par today and I've got a chance going into tomorrow.

Q. Like you say, you had a lot of looks at birdie and I thought the stroke looked good. I thought the ball was turning over nice, too.
TIGER WOODS: I probably miss-read about half of them. It's tricky out there. These greens aren't exactly the smoothest in the world but the key was I gave myself a lot of looks and eventually they ended up going in.

Q. Your thoughts going into the final round?
TIGER WOODS: I've got a shot. Tomorrow, I don't know what the guys are going to do behind me here today. As of right now, I'm six back, but from what we've seen in the past, anything can happen the last four or five holes. As.

Of right now, I'm going to probably be about an hour or so ahead of the leaders and my responsibility tomorrow is going to go out there and put something in the red and post a number.

Q. You're leading the field in shot proximity for the week. Just talk about how you're playing and how you're hitting the ball?
TIGER WOODS: Today was the highest score I could possibly have shot today. I really hit it good. I really had nice control of it today. If I could have just made a few more putts on the front nine, could have got the round started but I got the round started with a par putt on 12. Overall, I feel very pleased to shoot something in the red and gave myself a chance going into tomorrow. See what happens.

Q. How much different were the greens today than Thursday and Friday? Because you had 28 putts Thursday, 27, 28.
TIGER WOODS: They were smoother today but still slick. Duf and I were talking about it today, you know, be careful putting the putter down because it will slip on the green. If you get a gust from behind us, it could nudge that ball. So we've got to be careful out there. The wind is gusty, it's blowing and these greens are very slippery.

Q. And the wind was out of a different direction?
TIGER WOODS: It was primarily out of the east but then it came out of the south for a little spurt there and threw us for a little bit of a loop because it shouldn't have been there. Coming back around from the east, it's just tough out there. This is a tough golf course, tough wind, and overall, just a very tough tournament to play.

Q. Is the hardest part of this process because you're making such tremendous strides, is the hardest part for you to keep patient and not just expect more?
TIGER WOODS: Not really. This is only my third tournament of the season. It's not that many. What have I played, nine rounds of golf this year? That's not a lot. I've been pretty patient with it. I've still got some work to do. But I'm very pleased at the way I've progressed, especially this week.

Q. In those nine rounds, how would you characterize what's happened with your ball-striking?
TIGER WOODS: It's gotten better. I'm starting to get -- I'm making some tweaks in my golf swing but also trying to understand what this body can do. It's not like it used to be. Those angles are gone.

So I've had to make a little bit of adjustments here and there and I think I've done that, and I think I've done a pretty good job of just kind of gradually building it together. You know, today was the best I've hit it and I thought yesterday was pretty good, but today was a little better.

Q. Can you explain what you were trying to do with the tee shots on 15 and 17?
TIGER WOODS: Well, 15, I was trying to hit a punch cut, and I pulled it. Just got on top of it and pulled it. Then 17, just try not to stand it up because I was -- with my golf ball and with my lofts are a little bit weaker, that's kind of an ask for a 6 to cut it. I didn't want to hit 5. That brings over the green in play. I bailed out and kind of pulled it and then turned it on 17.

Q. Back in the day, is this a round where you're annoyed with yourself after afterward or have you allowed yourself to cut yourself some slack?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I can't be that annoyed because I played really well. I wish I'd made a few more putts. I hit good putts. I just didn't get anything going on that front nine but I was hanging in there. I was grinding. I made one nice up-and-down at 4 from over the green but I was just kind of hanging in there, hanging in there and eventually it finally turned at 12 and 13.

Q. How would you describe your sort of emotions now going into tomorrow? Are you excited? Optimistic?
TIGER WOODS: I feel very good. I'm excited about -- as of right now, I'm six back but we'll see where it is at the end of the day. But either case, I've got a shot going into tomorrow.

My job is to go out and post a number. I'll be far enough ahead, as I said earlier, that these guys will still have three or four holes to go when I'm done and hopefully I'll be hopefully my number will be good enough.

Q. Too far removed to think about the 62 in 2012, or that that's out there, within range for you, so to speak? I know it's a long time ago?
TIGER WOODS: I think the lowest round was 65 so far this week. 66, 65. So no one's really done anything. It's just a different golf course.

Back during that day, it was softer. That number could be had. These conditions, it's tough. It really is tough to get anything going. It's pretty evident; you have this many players and the lowest round is 65. That shows you how hard it is.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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