Rory McIlroy has had a lot of transition in his golfing career and this week at the Players Championship was always going to be another one of those weeks.
The Masters champion is presented with a green jacket, while the Players champion is awarded a red jacket and a hand-cut crystal trophy.
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla.
Little more than 20 minutes on, he was tied-18th and likely feeling like he had wasted one of the best rounds of his career.
According to numerous world's best, there are many ways to play TPC Sawgrass and be successful.
Sergio Garcia one-ups Fowler with an ace on No. 17 for real. In fact, he was overheard to tell his caddie and brother Austin that his strategy at the new drivable, par 4, 12th hole will likely be a 4-iron and a 60 degree wedge.
This time he hit the wooden sleepers at the front of the island green, with the ball bouncing on to the putting surface instead of into the water. I felt like I was a little bit up in the clouds, and when I woke up, I was four-over after six (holes). "You just kind of see the shot and hit the shot and see the putt and hit the putt".
By playing the final three holes in nine shots - 3-under par - he salvaged a 1-over 73 and kept himself in the game.
"[That camera operator is] capturing tight face shots as [the players] prepare to hit the shot and then the tight face shots as part of their reaction, whether the ball lands on land or splashes down", Roy explains.
"To go bogey-free around this place, very hard to do, obviously", he said. To chip out sideways would risk chipping into the water. He felt he had no choice but to find a gap in the top of the trees and go for the green. "And I just think I was mentally burned out from everything that had gone on". "I'm going for a MRI scan just to make sure it's not serious and then I'll see what we do from there. But it just didn't cut". However, after starting at the 10th he made bogeys at the first, fourth and eight on his way in to slip back to one under.
Hughes and McGirt tee off at 8:38 a.m. ET and 2:03 p.m., respectively, on Friday. When they signed their cards, the difference was only three. And yes, the word "thrilling" has been used a time or two. The ball came straight left off the putter, missing the hole and leaving another 1-and-a-half feet coming back for double bogey.
But there were example of swift changes in momentum all day.
This week, I made a decision to head south with my wife Lisa in search of warmer weather and to take in the 44 edition of the Players Championship.
Compounding the frustration, Spieth blasted out to 45 feet and three-putted for double bogey.
It was like that all day.
Since he returned to action, McIlroy has performed well with three top-10 finishes, including a tie for seventh at the Masters.
"I'm not going to lie, I would have loved to have played better than I did the first two days but it has been overwhelming, I'm not going to lie", he said.