How to watch Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson go head-to-head today

Tiger Woods of the United States plays a shot from a bunker during practice rounds prior to THE PLAYERS Championship on the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass

Tiger Woods of the United States plays a shot from a bunker during practice rounds prior to THE PLAYERS Championship on the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass

And Woods remains stuck in a pattern of average golf that began at the Masters, continued at the Wells Fargo Championship and carried over through two rounds of the Players Champions.

"I should be hitting them inside flag length, and I didn't do that at all today", said Woods, who is playing in his eighth tournament this year after coming back from spinal fusion surgery.

They were last in the same group four years ago, but Mickelson sensed a chance to poke fun at the hype surrounding the pairing.

If Woods should make the halfway cut in the $11million event it will ensure that the 14-time Major victor will contest all four rounds in a seventh of eighth events since returning to full-time competition earlier this year. "I'm really happy with it".

Woods still maintained he was not out of the tournament despite being nine shots adrift of the early halfway lead, and he added: "I've got to shoot something in the mid-60s both days to have a chance". "We're going to have good greens and I know that the three of us, Phil, Tiger and myself, we'll be able to go out and start building some momentum together".

At Woods' news conference later at Sawgrass he was asked about Mickelson's proposition.

Woods responded to Mickelson, declaring with a smile of his own, "I'm definitely not against that and we'll play for whatever makes him uncomfortable".

Woods and Mickelson rarely played together on Thursdays and Fridays in their heyday, with tournament organizers keeping them apart to spread their top talent across the TV schedules.

"There's been stretches of seasons where I've been great and exceptional, but so far this year I have been exceptional or above average most weeks, which is great", he said.

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However former world No.1 Woods, nonetheless easing his manner again into aggressive golf, mentioned: "No, what my enjoying companions are doing, there's too many guys on the market which might be enjoying very well and going low, and my duty was to go low and shoot one thing within the crimson [under par] at this time".

"It'd be awesome to see Tiger lift the trophy again", said Bale, who is preparing for the Champions League final against Liverpool in Kiev on May 26.

"I hopefully give myself more looks", he said. I think it was that good.

"And it sucked to have to play against him".

"Boy it was nice to turn the round completely around there at 9", mused Woods after the round.

"I don't care what people are talking about", he said. "That's what Arnold (Palmer) and Jack (Nicklaus) used to do all the time".

Mickelson, the 2007 Players champion, rubbished the idea a weird, long sleeve button up which resembled a business shirt had any affect on his play. It is often dubbed golf's "fifth major".

Three-times major champion Jordan Spieth hit three balls into the water on his outward nine - the back nine - to post a three-over 75 that leaves him in danger of missing his fourth consecutive cut in the event.

"If you win here, you can win anywhere else", he told reporters.

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