Tiger v. Phil: A Thanksgiving Clash

Charles Brennan '20

“The Match” took place this Friday; a battle between two rivals who have faced off countless times before, however, this time it didn’t end with the Tiger fist pump. Lefty took home the $9 million from the PPV televised round of golf broadcasted by Bleacher Report. It certainly was a tense match, with emotions being shown hole after hole. The competitive spirits that are usually shown from Tiger Woods, who is still trying to show the world that he is indeed back, and Phil Mickelson, who is attempting to finally get one up on his counterpart, is what the golf community was craving. Though Phil did, in fact, beat Tiger after extra holes, the match itself was quite underwhelming. Both golfers looked sluggish, reflecting their play from the Ryder Cup. Their lazy play resulted in only 11 birdies all day on a course that is not exactly Augusta.

While both played below themselves, Phil did outplay Tiger. He was in the lead for most of the match, only giving it up for a single hole. Throughout the match, they also competed in side bets, both betting on who would have the longest drive or get the ball closest to the pin. Both of their winnings from the betting (800k) was donated to the charity of their choice.

It all came down to the 17th, with Phil given a chance to win the hole and the match with a birdie. He shot a par and gave Tiger a chance to stay in it. One shot back, Tiger chipped in from the fringe to tie it up going into the 18th, displaying his poise and his classic fist pump.

Both, still square after the 18th, went into a playoff. After replaying the 18th hole and staying squared, they headed over to the lit up makeshift par 3, designed in the event the round went on into the night. And into the night it went, as it took three more attempts until finally, Phil edged out Tiger on the 22nd. While both golfers provided a suspenseful performance down the stretch, the idea of a pay-per-view golf match with just two people was not the greatest idea in the first place, even if it involves two of the most iconic figures in the sport.