THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Matthew Wolff will be paired with Tiger Woods for the first time in his young PGA Tour career for Rounds 1 and 2 at the Zozo Championship, but the 21-year-old said he won’t try to impress the 15-time major champion.
“It would be nice to go out and have Tiger talk about how good you are and stuff, his opinion is definitely a higher value than others,” Wolff said, “but at the end of the day, if you don’t have confidence in yourself and you’re just trying to impress him, I just feel that that’s not a really good way to go about it.”
Wolff’s not the first player to try and downplay a pairing with Woods. It was at Sherwood during Woods’ own Hero World Challenge in 2010 when Rory McIlroy was first paired with Woods in a competitive round.
“I was pretty excited. Nervous as well,” McIlroy said.
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Heading into the final hole on Friday, McIlroy even allowed himself to consider his position to Woods, which in retrospect was something of a learning moment.
“I remember coming down the last hole, I think he was 5 under for the day and I was 4 under for the day and I’m thinking, oh, if I birdie, I can tie him,” McIlroy smiled. “He ended up making birdie and shooting 6 under and I doubled the last to shoot 2 under.
“I think sort of that’s etched in my memory just that little bit more because it was a dream of mine to play in a tournament with him and against him.”