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posted: 9/28/2012 9:17 PM

Woods-Stricker to sit out morning matches

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  • Tiger Woods hangs his head in disbelief after narrowly missing a birdie putt on No. 18 during Friday's Ryder Cup at Medinah.

      Tiger Woods hangs his head in disbelief after narrowly missing a birdie putt on No. 18 during Friday's Ryder Cup at Medinah.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

 
 

Though he came alive toward the end of a very long and pointless day, there was a question that seemed to be festering in some quarters Friday.

Is it finally time to sit Tiger Woods?

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Ian Poulter, who teamed with Justin Rose to defeat Woods and Steve Stricker 2&1 in the morning foursomes matches, was asked if a badly struggling Woods should have taken a seat for the afternoon session.

"Is (captain) Davis Love going to sit Tiger Woods? He's a brave man (if he does)," said a smiling Poulter. "You know, he's Tiger Woods. He's the guy they get out there to fire them up. He didn't quite fire them up this morning, but you never know.

"When Tiger is on he's on and he's very impressive, but when he's not, he's not. It's a brave captain to leave him out."

Well, consider Love one brave captain then, because late Friday night the lineups for Saturday morning's foursomes matches were unveiled, and for the first time in his Cup career Woods' name was not on the card.

"I've been talking to (my assistants) for well over a year about this, and we just felt like we didn't want anybody to have to play five matches on this golf course," Love said. "It's a big, long golf course. It's tough.

"We just don't want guys to be worn out. We need Tiger and Steve in the afternoon. We need Tiger and Steve on Sunday."

After a rough morning round, Woods came alive in the afternoon, battling back to within a final putt by Woods of halving the match with Lee Westwood and Cup rookie Nicolas Colsaerts, but his 20-footer skirted the left edge of the cup to cap off a day of two losses.

"Colsaerts was 10 under on his own ball; that's unbelievable golf, and that's usually what it takes to beat Tiger Woods," Love said. "They weren't as sharp this morning, but they played great, and they probably would have beat anybody else on the course except for Colsaerts."

Downing Phil's buzz:

One European reporter attempted to joke with Phil Mickelson in the interview room by mentioning that a BBC commentator was wondering how he got such a nice suntan after spending so much time in the trees.

Phil wasn't biting, though.

After a short pause, he simply said: "We won, right? I'm not sure you saw the result."

Just plane loud:

At about 2 p.m. Friday afternoon, the decibel level around Medinah reached a new high, and it had nothing to do with the fact that the U.S. team was putting a thumping on the Euros in fourball play at that exact hour.

It had everything to do with the flight path into O'Hare Airport changing, however, and that led to jet after jet coming in from the west, cruising low over the golf course and preparing for a landing at O'Hare.

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