Protecting the lead: Tiger Woods holds 54-hole lead at East Lake

PGA The Tour Championship- Second Round

Rose played with Woods on Saturday but because McIlroy finished his third round before the Englishman, he gets to accompany the 14-times major champion in the final pairing on Sunday.

The victor of the FedEx Cup will be rewarded with $10 million, while the total purse for 2018 is $35 million. "I would love to be able to win this event, but there are some good players behind me".

Five years and four back surgeries later, Tiger Woods is a victor on the PGA Tour once again. He slowed down on the back nine, making just a single birdie, doing well after leaving a chip shot short at the 16th to make a bogey and failing to birdie the 18th. "And because of that, I felt comfortable when I got to Bay Hill, (and) when I grabbed the lead at The Open Championship", Woods said.

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Woods shot a final round 1-over 71 in Atlanta, Georgia on Monday (NZT). "The only hard part was getting my speed on the greens".

McIlroy and Rose don't promise to make it easy. It was a sudden drop for Rahm, who took bogey from the rough on the 14th hole and then put his tee shot into the water on the par-3 15th for a double bogey and a 68. But that kind of dominance had been a distant, albeit vivid, memory for Woods, who has had four back operations since spring 2014 and was limited to 12 tour starts from 2015 through 2017. Woods poured that one in from 25 feet, and the roar resonated across East Lake. "Just considering where I've been, what I've had to dig through and fight through and the amount of help I've had to have to get myself to this point".

Rose has wider reason to keep Woods within view.

The three Australians in this week's 30-man field all failed to fire, with Jason Day carding a two-under 68 on Sunday to finish outright 18th, ahead of Cameron Smith (20th) and Marc Leishman (tied-21st).

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If Woods wins in Atlanta, Golfweek has outlined all the other scenarios that must come to fruition for Woods to capture the third FedEx Cup of his career.

He trailed by four at The Open Championship and PGA Championship, and was five back starting the final round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard, the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide and his most recent start, the BMW Championship. It's his 80th PGA Tour win overall, which moves him to within two of Sam Snead's all-time record of 82. "Obviously, people are excited about watching Tiger play again". Denny McCarthy, who has already earned enough money to secure a return to the PGA Tour, was one shot back.

"Certainly, this is going to be up there as one of my better accomplishments I've had [if I win]", Woods told NBC.

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