Calm and collected

Paul McGinley praised Tiger Woods' composed manner after he won the Players Championship at Sawgrass for a second time.

Last Updated: 13/05/13 at 17:11 Post Comment

The world number one, who has now claimed four titles in 2013, double bogeyed the 14th hole of his final round in Florida, but regrouped to best Kevin Streelman, David Lingmerth and Jeff Maggert by two strokes.

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2014 European Ryder Cup Captain McGinley says Woods, who also seized the Players Championship title in 2001, showed why he has been at the apex of world golf for so long with his exploits at Ponte Vedra Beach.

But the Irishman had words of encouragement for Sergio Garcia, who was tied with Woods at the zenith of the leaderboard with two holes remaining, before splashing into the water twice at the 17th and seeing his hopes of a second Players title dashed.

"It wasn't just pure awesome golf that won the tournament for Tiger, it was the clinical way he took apart the golf course for four days and remained patient," McGinley, who amassed four European Tour wins, told Sky Sports.

"That's why he has been as successful as he has and won 14 Major Championships - and it would be a brave man to bet against him winning a Major this year."

McGinley continued: "You always know the finish around Sawgrass can be exciting; you can go both ways and Tiger was professional, played the final three holes in one-under-par and got the job done.

Aggressive

"Sergio [the 2008 Players Champion] obviously went the wrong way and lost it on 17, which is no place to be aggressive, but I thought he matched Tiger for 70 holes, had a really good look in his eye and played a lot of really good golf."

Sky Sports pundit Butch Harmon believes Woods is relishing his partnership with new caddie Joe LaCava, who has previously bagged for 1992 Masters Champion Fred Couples and seven-time PGA Tour winner Dustin Johnson.

And he thinks the 37-year-old, who was in contention to win the Masters in April before he was handed a much-documented shot penalty, is in prime position to pluck a fourth US Open crown when the next Major tees of at Merion Golf Club, Pennsylvania in June.

"LaCava is a great caddie - he had so many wins with Couples - and he is always so calm and in control of himself that I think he is the perfect match for Tiger," said Harmon. "He was also called in by Woods to read putts, something we didn't see with [previous caddie] Steve Williams.

"But Tiger showed why he is the best player in the world and the best player to ever walk on this planet. He messed up on the 14th but he didn't let it bother him; he came right back with an unbelievable up and down at 15 and went on to post a number.

"He will now go on to the next Major Championship with a lot of confidence as he is healthy, likes his golf swing and feels good about where he is in his life.

"It's going to be fun to see what's ahead."

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