Carlos Alcaraz speaks with CNN after US Open win
LOS ANGELES (CNN) –Tiger Woods could have won any four-event tournament in the world. He could have been the king of the majors.
If he hadn’t needed a miraculous shot in the closing birdie at the U.S. Open, he could have won the U.S. Open.
In his mind, all he had to do was not make a putt in the final round and win. He would have done it.
Instead, the man of the moment made an eagle up in the fifth hole, then had to watch as the U.S. Open trophy was slipped into his hands, by the same man and a different person.
“I’ve never won anywhere before,” the American said in a wide-ranging phone interview from his home in San Diego, after his fourth major championship. “This is a little bit like winning the lottery, a little bit overwhelming.”
Woods did his best to make it out of the final round with a comfortable lead. But after playing one of the great rounds of golf on hard, wet turf, and with a score he should never have made, after sinking a 15-foot par putt on the 18th hole, and then a 14-footer for eagle on the 17th, he needed a miracle. A birdie on the final hole from four feet out was what he got. It made no sense. The man who made the four birdies in as many U.S. Opens, and who is almost universally regarded as the greatest golfer ever on earth, couldn’t even finish with a tie for the lead.
“He’s going to be in my nightmares for a long time,” said the only man to have won the U.S. Open four times in his career. “I hope he gets better at golf because he won the tournament with one of the greatest shots in history. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen anything like it in my life. I was hoping he had one of his special shots in the 10th.”
Woods was so busy worrying about his career, about his future, about the future of the game, that he couldn’t quite process what happened on the 18th hole of his final major — the same hole where he had a chance to win it all from over a half-mile away.
The eagle on 18 was his second of