If anyone was wondering if Tiger Woods was fully deserving of his Ryder Cup wildcard, then he answered them with an emphatic 62 in the first round of the BMW Championship.
The 14-time major winner shot his lowest opening round since 1999 at the BMW Championship.
It was an incredible statement two days after receiving his Ryder Cup recall at the start of this week. As if Paris later this month required any more hype The score came within one stroke of his career low round. A bogey at his penultimate hole, the par-three eighth, marred an otherwise stellar performance in oppressive humidity on the Aronimink course in the rolling hills just west of Philadelphia.
But Woods made amends with a closing birdie at the par-five ninth, where he sank a seven-foot putt Earlier, he rushed to the turn in 29 strokes, including a five-foot eagle at the par-five 16th.
Woods has not won a tournament since 2013, though he missed much of four seasons with a chronic back injury before a spinal-fusion surgery last year alleviated the problem.
Tiger Tracker was in heaven:
Rory McIlroy was threatening to upstage Woods by going through the first 15 holes. But still, to see an icon in this form with three weeks to go before the biennial Ryder Cup dust-up, of course, only quickened the pulse.
Matt Wallace was one of the unlucky ones to miss out on a Cup wildcard when Thomas Bjorn made his choice on Wednesday having won his third title tile of the year at the Made In Denmark event on Sunday. He shot an opening 68 in the Omega European Masters in Switzerland, four off the pace set by Maxiilian Kiefer.
"Obviously I'm disappointed because that was my goal, and my dream, and I thought I showed enough," Wallace said. "But I fully back Team Europe now to give the Americans a good go. … I've had a lot of disappointment in my life and my career playing golf and I've always used it as fire to get better. And this is probably one of the biggest ones you can have so I just say, 'Watch this space' now."
It has been suggested that Wallace could still be invited to the event in Paris as an observer by Bjorn but no decision has yet been taken. Bjorn also overlooked the credentials of Thomas Pieters and Matthew Fitzpatrick - both of whom played at Hazeltine two years ago - as he opted for the experienced quartet of Paul Casey, Sergio Garcia, Henrik Stenson and Ian Poulter.
Wallace, Pieters and Fitzpatrick were all in action together in the same group for the opening round of the European Masters. "We were the rejects," joked Pieters.
Kieffer recorded seven birdies against a single dropped shot on the 12th to sign for a six-under 64 in the Swiss mountain resort.
The 28-year-old is searching for a maiden European Tour title in his 162nd event, and holds a one-shot advantage over England's Andy Sullivan, Dane Soren Kjeldsen, France's Julien Guerrier and Japan's Hideto Tanihara.