Justin Rose has control of the FedEx Cup at the halfway point of the Tour Championship and he has a Saturday date with a certain 14-time major champion.
Rose birdied the closing hole at East Lake Friday for a 67 and posted seven-under through 36-holes. He then watched as Tiger Woods, one of the overnight leaders, matched that birdie, shot 68 and tied Rose in the clubhouse at seven-under.
While Woods stayed in the hunt for his 80th career win, Rose now controls the FedEx Cup thanks to the collapse of Bryson DeChambeau.
DeChambeau, who struggled then recovered to shoot 71 on Thursday, took himself out of the overall FedEx Cup conversation with a 75 that left him tied for next-to-last in the field. That leaves Rose, the world’s No. 1 player, with a great chance to win it all and the $10 million that goes with it.
Rose admitted his Friday round wasn’t as easy as it was on Thursday. “It’s hard to hit a lot of fairways. I did on Thursday, today was much more of a struggle.”
Woods echoed Rose’s thoughts.
“This is not an easy golf course. It’s a grinders golf course and today I grinded out a decent score. The rough is brutal. There are no good lies. You hit and hope.”
Woods held the lead by himself after birdies at 14 and 15 got him to eight-under but at the par four 16th he pulled his drive in the right rough then tried to chop it out but ended up buried in the face of a bunker 55 yards short of the green. He blasted out sideways, wedged to 14 feet then missed his bogey putt and fell back to six-under. His bid for eagle at 18 from 31 feet just missed and he holed his short birdie putt to tie Rose.
Rose and Woods are two clear of Rory McIlroy, who continues to throw away shots with his questionable short game. He couldn’t birdie 18 from the front fringe just off the green. and settled for 68 and is alone at five-under.
Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm, Billy Horschel and Pat Cantlay are all tied at four-under par.