Woods was back at Augusta National for the first time in three years, finally ready to challenge for a fifth green jacket after spinal fusion surgery last year. Just 16 of the 87 players in the field broke par in the second round.
Woods was in danger of playing himself out of the tournament when he bogeyed the 11th and found the water with his tee shot on the 12th, but crucially salvaged a bogey after a mediocre pitch. Even a bogey on the final hole felt like a par the way he navigated out of the trees and limited the damage with a pitch that stopped inches from going in. He was looking good for much of the round before struggling during a two-hole stretch. He made a sweeping 30-footer for birdie and the par-5 second. "I'm not in control of my own destiny".
"I hit a lot of handsome putts but I didn't hit the ball very good with my irons".
"Hit a little fade up the left side", he thought. That kind of summed up the whole day. "I hit so many handsome putts". Spieth pushed his first drive way right and pulled his next one well left.
Spieth, two shots clear overnight, began with a double bogey and dropped another shot at the next in a two-over 74 and a four-under-par halfway total. "It's a major. You're going to have to take some chances at some point during the week if you want to win, and that was a time where I thought I had to take a chance".
"But to still be in the tournament through two rounds is nice".
"Six months ago I didn't know if I'd be playing golf", Woods told reporters. "I'm definitely in a good position".
The good news for Woods is that there is a Saturday after flirting with the cut line before sliding in with one stroke to spare.
The 82nd Masters Tournament was billed as a thrill ride and most of Thursday's first round didn't disappoint.
"I feel like I don't have to swing my best to play my best golf, but if I can think the way I'm thinking right now and stay in that mindset, that's when I've been able to produce my best results". "It was quite insane, all the emotions that I dealt with overnight, but I was more than ecstatic to just be walking to that first tee and be playing in my first Masters".
"But it's incredible for have the opportunity again, to still come out here and play this golf course".