Annika Sorenstam is Tiger Woods' new hero. After holing a short birdie putt on the ninth hole of the 2004 Skins game, Tiger expressed his admiration for Annika by giving her a (Golden?) bear hug.
It didn't hurt that her birdie kept $250,000 in play in this, the twenty-second playing of the Skins game.
With Scott already in the hole for a birdie, Woods' six-footer for bird lipped out, leaving the weight $250,000 squarely on sorenstam's shoulders. "I should've made things a little bit easier for Annika on the last hole, but kind of blew that one," said Woods, "but I had my chances today to get a couple skins and just couldn't do it."
Sorenstam struggled against the long-bombing males, but said "I was glad to make it when I really needed to" of her putt on the ninth. Annika's putt tied Aussie Adam Scott, carrying over seven skins to the tenth hole. Scott won the first two holes and would have swept the front if Annika had missed. The tenth hole is now worth a mere $300,000.
Scott's two skins were the fewest won on the first day in the 22-year tournament history. Sorenstam, who finished second at the Trilogy club last year by holing a 40-yard bunker shot on nine (now 18), hit every fairway but struggled with her short game. She quipped "I really enjoy playing with these guys, but I couldn't really keep up with them today. I have to sharpen my game tomorrow."
Annika Sorenstam, Adam Scott, Tiger Woods, and Fred Couples will play the final nine holes at Trilogy Golf Club on Sunday for a total of $950,000. As reported previously, ABC will air the final nine holes from 3:30-6:00pm on Sunday.