Tiger Woods is switching putters
this week at the British Open in an effort to conquer the slower greens at St.
Woods will use a Nike putter at the
Old Course, adding it to the company’s woods and irons already in his bag. He’s
used a Titleist Scotty Cameron putter in winning 13 major titles since 1999.
“It’s one of those things where
I’ve struggled on slower greens,” Woods, who won the last two Opens played at
St. Andrews in 2000 and 2005, said at a news conference. “This putter does come
off faster with the new groove technology. I haven’t had to make that much of
an adjustment because the ball is coming off a little bit quicker.”
Woods, 34, said the greens were
under 10 Tuesday on the Stimpmeter, a device that measures the speed of the surface.
He prefers them to be at about 14, similar to those on the US PGA Tour.
The 14-time major winner said he’s
spoken many times with caddie Steve Williams about what he can do to combat
slower greens. “I’ve always experimented with other putters throughout the
years, but I’ve never put one in play until now,” he said, without saying if
the switch was permanent.
Woods signed with Beaverton,
Oregon-based Nike after turning pro in 1996.
The Open runs from Thursday until
Sunday. Woods said he expects a warm reception from the fans as he makes his
first appearance in Britain since admitting marital infidelity. He’s yet to win
since returning to golf in April.
“The Scottish fans have always been
fantastic with respect to golf and all the players,” he said. “I wouldn’t see
anything different than what they’ve been over the years.”