THE PLAYERS: Day, Scott stay in touch

Paola Ditto
Mag 13, 2017

"So it's, it might just be a flare-up of what happened previously and I just need to rest for a few days and it might be okay".

But he is hopeful the injury is not serious, saying: "I'm getting a MRI on Monday when I land back in Belfast, just treatment now". "I feel very settled and very lucky to be in this position, and now it's just about trying to make the most of, I guess, the fortune that I've had". - Competitors finish rounds at The Players and face more post-round stops than a NY subway train, being shuttled through a rinse cycle of television, radio and print interviews. And amid all the other oddities this week, playing well and scoring well have seldom looked more at odds.

"I've played here 25 years, so it's not like that one round was going to make a big difference", Mickelson said. "I started the day, I wouldn't have expected a round like that".

The second round is scheduled to conclude Friday, then the field will be cut to the top 70 and ties for the weekend.

Meanwhile, Luke List made the first eagle on the new par-4 12th hole, driving the green and sinking the putt from 14 feet, 9 inches. I played some good golf. "And then I went back at it on Friday and instead of maybe gradually building it up again, I hit balls for four or five hours on Friday and did the same on Saturday". "Historically just haven't figured it out on these greens yet, and so I'm just not going to think too much about it".

Masters champion Sergio Garcia recorded another memorable moment with a hole-in-one on the iconic par-three 17th, but had to settle for a 73.

Jason Day, Adam Scott and Aaron Baddeley will be forced to play catch-up at the Players Championship after the Australian trio missed golden opportunities to steal the first-round lead at TPC Sawgrass.

"It was great", Garcia said.

A hole-in-one, the eighth on the par-3 17th in tournament history.

What thrilled the Spaniard even more was the number on his card - 1.

Willett, who split with long-time caddie Jonathan Smart last month, was 11 over par when he retired after nine holes of the second round.

"If I have a good day tomorrow, I'll still be in good shape", Garcia said.

"To have 90,000 people calling your name, that was extremely special, and I was nervous", he admitted, adding that his nerves were perhaps unfounded because he only had to kick the ball 15 yards.

"One of those days where I kept out of trouble", said Hughes, of Canada. "Yeah, we'll just stick to the game plan we've had so far".

McIlroy said he is resting and managing his back, and will pay more attention to recovery next week off before beginning a busy summer. Jordan Spieth opened with a 73, including a double bogey on the first hole (his 10th) when he became so frustrated by a poorly raked bunker that he took a picture of it. So he reached into his bag for his phone and took a picture. He tried on the first hole (his 10 of the day), and his ball went left.

Fast starts and bad finishes were the norm, and not just for Scott. "These greens get pretty crusty and, historically, whenever firm Bermuda or greens are crusty to where it's tough to set the putter down, I just struggle with my alignment and it just kind of throws me off".

McGirt was among 13 players from the morning draw who shot in the 60s, but he was the only player to get as low as 6 under until he missed a short par putt on the final hole.

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