PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. — Webb Simpson’s remarkable 54-hole run has given him what feels like an insurmountable seven-stroke lead at the Players Championship, robbing golf fans of any sort of Sunday excitement. But the star-studded final-round pairing of Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth could make Mother’s Day at TPC Sawgrass well worth the price of admission, especially if the duo performs like they did on moving day.
Woods and Spieth, who both appeared destined for an early exit as they hovered on the cut line late Friday afternoon, each carded their career-low rounds at Sawgrass on Saturday, a pair of scintillating seven-under 65s that included a combined 18 birdies. At day’s end, Spieth and Woods found themselves tied for ninth at eight-under 208, and thanks to a Charl Schwartzel birdie at the 18th that put him at nine under, fans will get the super pairing that hopes to live up to the hype that the Thursday and Friday super groups could not.
This will mark the second time Spieth and Woods play together this season, the first coming at the Vaslpar Championship, when Woods fired rounds of 70 and 68 on Thursday and Friday, eventually going on to finish in a tie for second. Spieth struggled, posting rounds of 71 and 76 to miss the cut.
Prior to Innisbrook, it was all Spieth when they faced off head-to-head, including the 2014 Open Championship, when Spieth shot a third-round 67 to beat Woods by six strokes on Saturday at Royal Liverpool. In nine total rounds together, Spieth owns a 70.00 scoring average, a full 3.11 strokes better than Woods.
Woods and Spieth, with 17 major championships between them, are set to tee off at 2:05 p.m. on Sunday, and will start 11 strokes back of Simpson’s lead.