Tiger Woods and the A T & T National tournament return to Congressional Country Club this week after a two-year hiatus caused by the club’s hosting of the 2011 U.S. Open. As the commentators like to say, Tiger’s presence as the host of this event will “move the needle” and there should be swarms of adoring fans attending in spite of the sweltering heat forecast this weekend in the nation’s capitol.
They will be in for a treat because Tiger’s new motif is he only wins at tournaments hosted by the iconic heroes of the game. Having won Arnie and Jack’s events at Bay Hill and Memorial already this year, winning his own event at the storied Congressional Country Club seems only fitting.
The only thing mitigating that might be the set up of the course. I have a feeling that if the folks at Congressional have a say the pins will be hidden in the Port-A-Johns to try to avoid the scoring frenzy that occurred in the soft conditions when Rory blistered the course at 16 under last year. They will be anxious to prove to golf officials watching that Congressional is still a worthy major championship venue.
The main beneficiaries of this event are military personnel and their families who will be honored guests and the Tiger Woods Foundation who is the main charitable beneficiary. Tiger has said he wants to expand the presence of his foundation and their learning programs on the east coast and making Washington, D.C. as a base for these activities seems to be his priority. The Tiger Woods Foundation and Congressional have agreed to continue their relationship with this event through 2014.
Other than missing a couple of notable Irishman-McDowell, McIlroy, Harrington, and Clarke-who are playing in the Irish Open at Royal Portrush this week, the fans will have plenty of marquee players to follow. Dustin Johnson, Hunter Mahan, Jim Furyk, Nick Watney, Angel Cabrera, and K.J. Choi are among those scheduled to join in the Tiger festivities.
This should make for some entertaining weekend viewing from the air-conditioned comfort of your living room couch.