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No Way Out
Gary Van Sickle
July 31, 2000
David Duval, Ernie Els and other top players of this generation are trapped, knowing they'll never be No. 1 as long as you-know-who is around
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July 31, 2000

No Way Out

David Duval, Ernie Els and other top players of this generation are trapped, knowing they'll never be No. 1 as long as you-know-who is around

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Duval played his way into contention on Saturday with a 66 that featured the kind of good fortune that he hasn't seen for the past year. His drive at the 18th hole skidded right and could have ended up on Links Road and out of bounds. Instead, the ball kicked back to the left, and Duval made a birdie that got him into Sunday's final twosome with Woods. "A couple of months ago that ball probably goes out of bounds," Duval said after the round. "It feels like the worm has turned."

Chasing Tiger gave Duval a chance to erase the bad memories of the 5-iron he had hit into Rae's Creek on the 13th hole at Augusta that ultimately cost him the Masters in April. Duval made it a game on Sunday with four birdies on the front nine, but a birdie putt he left inches short at the 10th was a momentum killer. Woods made birdie at that hole. There was a two-shot swing at the 12th when Duval made bogey after a failed bump-and-run and Woods birdied again.

Chalk up round one of the Duval-versus-Woods rivalry to Woods. "Let's be realistic, there has not been a rival, period," Duval said before the final round. "No one has stepped up and played with him." After he'd lost, a disappointed and contrite Duval lauded Woods's play and described it as "efficient."

Following the awards ceremony spectators poured out of the grandstands and onto the streets of St. Andrews. Duval and Els stood together on the clubhouse steps. Nobody seemed to notice them.

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