Tiger Woods has always taken pride in his ability to grind throughout a round.
Even after making his first competitive start in 15 months, that "grinder" mentality was alive and well this week at the Hero World Challenge... especially in a trying final round on Sunday.
Woods shot a 4-over-par 76 at Albany on the last day of the tournament he hosts (73-65-70-76, 4-under 284) -- his worst score of the week -- in a roller coaster of a round that saw him make five birdies, three bogeys, seven pars and three double bogeys. He finished the 17-player tournament (it was 18 until Justin Rose withdrew due to injury on Friday) in 15th place.
Woods got his third round off to a blistering start on Saturday with four birdies in his first five holes. Sunday, meanwhile, was quite the contrast. After pars at his first four holes, Woods went bogey, double-bogey on Nos. 5 and 6.
Ever the competitor, Woods erased those three shots he gave back to par with three straight birdies.
Just when it seemed as though he might get something going, Woods backed up the three consecutive birdies with a bogey at No. 10 and a double bogey at No. 11 to get back to 3 over for the round. A bogey on No. 12 made it 4 over for the day.
Woods collected birdies at Nos. 14 and 15 to claw back to 2 over for the day, but gave all that hard work back on the 18th with his third double bogey of the week on that hole.
Though it may not reflect in the final results, in a week where no one knew what to expect from the 79-time PGA Tour winner and 14-time major champion -- including the man himself -- it was most certainly a step in the right direction for Woods. His 24 birdies this week were the most in the field... as were his six double bogeys.
Now he has something to build on. We most likely won't see Woods in competition again until the Farmers Insurance at Torrey Pines, Jan. 26-29.
Here are some highlights from Tiger's final round:
Gotta love the immediate club twirl on the first tee.
Here's Tiger's bounce-back birdie at No. 7 after a double bogey on No. 6:
Tiger's third birdie in a row at No. 9:
Here's a collection of social media reaction to Tiger from Sunday: