Former world No 1 Tiger Woods neatly summed up his opening round of the 96th US PGA Championship in four words.
“It wasn’t very good,” Woods said after a three-over-par 74 at Valhalla which featured four bogeys and just one birdie courtesy of chipping in on the 16th.
All eyes had been on Woods after he declared himself pain free and said he was targeting a 15th major title this week, despite getting in just nine holes of practice on Wednesday after withdrawing from the final round of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational with a back injury.
But the 38-year-old found the going difficult and even threw a club at his bag after a dropped shot on the 11th and slammed another into the ground following a poor tee shot on the 14th, while he also swore at himself after badly hooked drives on the first and second.
“A lot of bad shots and I never got a putt to the hole,” added the 14-time major winner, who is playing in just his fourth event since undergoing back surgery on March 31.
“My swing was dialled in on that range out there. Unfortunately, I didn’t carry it to the golf course.”
Colin Montgomerie was satisfied to mark his return to major championship golf with a highly respectable round of 70.
Montgomerie’s last appearance in a major came in this event in 2010, but the 51-year-old qualified by winning the Senior version in May and outscored Woods by four shots thanks to a round containing three birdies and two bogeys.
“It’s great being back in a regular major and while winning is one thing, I wanted to represent the Champions Tour well and 70 is okay to start with,” he said.
Sheffield’s Danny Willett started his bid for glory brightly and reaching the turn in 36. By the time he had gone through the 16th, he was tied for 23rd position on two under.