There was a fine approach to five feet on the first, a two-putt birdie from 30 feet on the par-five third and a brilliant second shot to four feet on the third.
Woods's back nine was much more uneven, with a three-putt bogey at the par-3 12th, and another bogey at 18, where he fanned his tee shot into some clumpy sand right of the fairway.
If the 41-year-old had stirred the memory bank with his first-round 69, then with three birdies in his first four holes, he switched on the mixer and made all the high-points of his career suddenly pour over back into the consciousness.
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The solid second-round effort, which included an eagle and four birdies, left the former world number one tied for fifth place at seven-under 137 in his first tournament in almost 10 months following spinal fusion surgery. "I made a few coming back but also missed my share".
Woods was even on the second hole to remain at four-under.
"I think it is successful because I went out there and shot 31 on the front nine and built upon what I did yesterday", responded Woods when asked how he rated the round. Those are the internal struggles I haven't had for a while.
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"I got the ball in the hole and the balls were going in, which was nice", Hoffman said in an interview with the Golf Channel. The first five holes I hit a lot of good shots and felt like I had a good rhythm and a couple birdies early on. While he had his chances, he didn't make another birdie and finished with a bogey after a poor drive. I really did struggle getting the speed and I blew a lot of them well past the hole and made a few coming back.
"It's awesome to see him playing some solid golf", said Patrick Reed, who moved into a tie for 10th with a 66.
"I didn't know what to expect, because I hadn't played".
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