Woods survives tense finish to win in Miami

Tiger Woods tonight made it three wins in five starts this year – but only after a late scare at Doral in Miami.

Tiger Woods tonight made it three wins in five starts this year – but only after a late scare at Doral in Miami.

The world number one beat Ryder Cup teammate David Toms and Colombian rookie Camilo Villegas by one to become the first player since Ray Floyd in 1981 to achieve a successful defence of the Ford Championship.

It was, quite incredibly, the 34th time out of 37 that Woods had turned at least a share of the 54-hole lead into victory on the US Tour.

But after playing the first 16 holes in five under to maintain his two-shot overnight lead it suddenly all became a bit tense.

First there was the shock of a bogey on the 17th when he sent a 113-yard pitch over the green and, from not a difficult spot, failed to get up and down.

It looked as if he might need a par at the demanding final hole to avoid his third play-off of the season, but up ahead Toms had his first three-putt of the whole week.

As a result Woods had the luxury of being able to finish with two bogeys – and did.

He was in the right-hand rough off the last tee and in a bunker for two, but even having to play the next shot with one foot in the sand and one above it he got the ball out to 12 feet and two-putted for the title.

Woods, already with the Buick Invitational and Dubai Desert Classic to his name in 2006, closed with a 69 for a 20 under par total of 268.

It was far from his finish of last year, when he was near flawless in shooting 63-66 at the weekend to pip Phil Mickelson, but it still goes down as his 48th US Tour victory and 64th worldwide.

An outward 33 had put Woods three clear and even when Toms birdied the 10th and 11th to cut the gap to one the response was the one everybody would have expected.

Woods holed from 13 feet for a matching three on the 11th and then produced a phenomenal birdie at the 603-yard 12th.

From 293 yards, his second shot was hammered downwind and although it landed in sand it had the momentum to run out of it and onto the green.

Nobody else had been on in two all day and by two-putting Woods restored his three-stroke cushion. Everything was going his way at that stage, but he made things interesting at the end.

Daniel Chopra, paired with Woods, slumped to a 77 and leading European in the end was his fellow Swede Fredrik Jacobson, who came through to fourth place with a 68.

Irishman Pádraig Harrington shot a disappointing 72 to drop down the rankings to 26th.

As for Mickelson, who shared the halfway lead with Woods but then fell four behind with a 72, he went in the water at both the eighth and ninth and wound up alongside Howell after a 73.

Collated final round scores and totals in the USPGA Tour Ford Championship at Doral, Doral Resort & CC, Doral, Florida, United States (USA unless stated, par 72):

268 Tiger Woods 64 67 68 69

269 David Toms 66 66 70 67, Camilo Villegas (Col) 65 66 71 67

273 Fredrik Jacobson (Swe) 70 67 68 68

274 Tag Ridings 68 69 66 71, Lucas Glover 67 67 71 69

275 Rich Beem 65 67 69 74, Jerry Kelly 69 70 68 68, Ernie Els (Rsa) 72 65 69 69, Carlos Franco (Par) 69 67 70 69, Jeff Sluman 69 68 72 66

276 Phil Mickelson 65 66 72 73, David Howell (Eng) 69 70 69 68, Davis Love III 68 69 67 72

277 Scott Verplank 66 65 74 72, Retief Goosen (Rsa) 70 69 72 66, Zach Johnson 69 65 71 72, Vijay Singh (Fij) 67 73 70 67, Harrison Frazar 69 67 71 70

278 Daniel Chopra (Swe) 66 67 68 77, Tom Pernice Jnr. 69 68 72 69, Stephen Ames (Can) 69 66 74 69, Greg Owen (Eng) 70 68 68 72, Mark Wilson 65 67 75 71, John Senden (Aus) 70 68 72 68

279 Ken Duke 69 69 71 70, Jesper Parnevik (Swe) 72 66 73 68, Shaun Micheel 69 67 70 73, Padraig Harrington (Irl) 68 70 69 72, Dean Wilson 66 68 69 76, Kent Jones 71 67 71 70, Shane Bertsch 68 67 74 70, Brett Quigley 70 70 69 70, Lee Janzen 72 65 70 72

280 Tim Clark (Rsa) 68 67 74 71, Billy Mayfair 68 71 74 67, Chris DiMarco 71 68 68 73, Paul Stankowski 70 69 72 69, Chad Campbell 68 66 71 75, Arjun Atwal (Ind) 68 69 74 69, Kevin Na (Kor) 69 67 72 72

281 Kenny Perry 69 70 70 72, Woody Austin 69 67 71 74, Briny Baird 68 67 72 74, Craig Barlow 68 70 72 71, Charles Warren 69 66 73 73, Fred Funk 69 70 72 70

282 Joey Snyder III 67 70 71 74, James Driscoll 72 67 72 71, Troy Matteson 70 64 72 76, Sean O’Hair 70 69 70 73, Brian Gay 69 71 74 68, Joe Ogilvie 68 72 72 70, Bo Van Pelt 69 68 71 74, Ryan Palmer 65 70 74 73, Rocco Mediate 68 70 71 73

283 Angel Cabrera (Arg) 70 68 72 73, Sergio Garcia (Spa) 69 69 71 74

284 Wes Short jr. 73 67 72 72, Joey Sindelar 72 68 75 69, Bubba Watson 69 70 68 77, Duffy Waldorf 68 70 74 72, Jimmy Walker 69 70 77 68

285 Jeff Brehaut 70 67 72 76, Trevor Immelman (Rsa) 68 71 70 76

286 Heath Slocum 71 69 70 76, Todd Fischer 70 70 71 75, Todd Hamilton 69 70 76 71

287 Justin Leonard 68 69 75 75, Jason Bohn 67 70 80 70, Robert Damron 69 70 74 74

288 Ryuji Imada (Jpn) 72 68 75 73.

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