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Woods played in the final group two weeks ago in Abu Dhabi, tied for the lead with Rock, and he had his poorest day striking the ball and finished in a tie for third. Woods played in the final group at his Chevron World Challenge at the end of last year and birdied the last two holes to beat Zach Johnson.

Woods doesn’t distinguish between tours, or even official events. Winning is winning. Losing is losing. All he sees at the moment is progress, and it’s hard to deny it.

“My bad days and bad shots are not as bad as they used to be,” Woods said.

Wi is making his own brand of progress, getting more comfortable with his swing and being in contention. He talks often about the demons in his head, which is typical of most any golfer.

“I’m sure I’ll be fighting my demons all day tomorrow and it’s how I handle myself tomorrow,” Wi said. “It’s not what other players are doing. How I handle myself tomorrow is going to be the outcome of the tournament.”

DIVOTS: Joseph Bramlett, playing on a sponsor’s exemption, made an albatross on the 11th hole at Spyglass when he holed out from 187 yards with a 6-iron. He negated that with two double bogeys and shot 73. … Among the amateurs to make the cut were Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick and Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops, who is playing Pebble Beach for the first time.