Tiger Woods couldn’t avoid a little a minute ago needling before Monday’s foundation standoff with Phil Mickelson, with a vacant forecast that he and accomplice Peyton Manning would overwhelm.
“By the day’s end, our group’s going to win, it’s simply a question of the amount we’re going to win by,” 15-time significant victor Woods said in a meeting posted on Golf Digest’s YouTube channel.
“Do we keep it close, do we blow them out … we would prefer not to have watchers turn off in case we’re 9-up through nine, that is most likely not going to be acceptable. So we’ll simply be 8-up through nine — something to that effect.”
You can watch The Match: Champions for Charity live on CNN (Channel 607) on Foxtel on Monday morning from 5am AEST
Ruling Masters champion Tiger Woods will group with Manning, a whiz NFL quarterback who resigned in 2016 in the wake of winning his subsequent Super Bowl title.
Five-time major winner Phil Mickelson will team with Tom Brady, who recently signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after winning six Super Bowl titles in 20 years with the New England Patriots.
The 18-hole match will include nine holes of four-ball and nine holes of modified alternate shot, with on-course challenges for charitable funds in addition to the $10 million pledged.
With the US PGA Tour and European Tour on hiatus amid the coronavirus pandemic, the made-for-TV event will be a welcome glimpse of live sports action, and the long rivalries among the players promise a little intensity even if it’s only a battle for bragging rights.
Television commentators include major winners Trevor Immelman and Jordan Spieth, along with Charles Barkley, the NBA great turned outspoken broadcaster who is the owner of a famously disjointed golf swing.
Tiger Woods and Phil Manning look to have the edge going in.
Tiger Woods is a regular at Medallist golf course in Hobe Sound, Florida, and Manning boasts a slightly better handicap than Brady — who has had less time to focus on his golf game as he adjusts to life with a new team amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
For the army of Tiger Woods-watchers around the world, it will be an opportunity to see exactly how far the 44-year-old’s wellness has come since he reeled to a 68th-place finish at Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles in February.
Proceeding with issue with his mulish back observed him skirt the WGC Mexico Championship, the Honda Classic and the Arnold Palmer Invitational, just as the Players Championship — which was closed down ahead of schedule by coronavirus concerns.
Woods said in April he would have been prepared for his Masters title resistance — which is presently set to come in November.
“Night and day,” he said of the improvement since February.
While the Woods-Mickelson contention may have lost a portion of its sizzle, Manning and Brady could include interest.
“They grew up playing football, not golf, yet they’re leaving their customary range of familiarity on national TV to exhibit their golf match-up,” Mickelson said.
“That is not a simple activity. For them to do that and make a fun, engaging condition that is helping other people, I have a ton of regard for it.”