Tiger Woods frustrated by 0-3 start to Ryder Cup

PARIS -- The good vibes and feel-good Tiger Woods story did not travel from Atlanta to Paris this week for the Ryder Cup.

Woods, who won for the first time in more than five years on Sunday at the Tour Championship, has never found his stride at Le Golf National, dropping all three of his team matches, including two on Saturday, as the United States has fallen behind by the daunting deficit of 10-6.

"Everything feels pretty good," Woods said when asked about how his body is holding up. "Just pretty pissed off, the fact that I lost three matches and didn't feel like I played poorly. That's the frustrating thing about match play. We can play well and nothing can happen.

"We ran against two guys [Tommy Fleetwood and Francesco Molinari] that were both playing well, and when one was out of the hole, especially the best-ball, the other one made birdie and vice versa. They did that a lot to us. At one point, they made six out of eight birdies on the back nine, and only one person was in the hole at a time. That's the nature of match play."

There's no question that Woods and first Patrick Reed and then Bryson DeChambeau on Saturday afternoon ran into a juggernaut in Fleetwood and Molinari, who became the first European team to go 4-0 at the Ryder Cup. Only Americans Lanny Wadkins and Larry Nelson had done so previously, back in 1979, the first year continental Europe joined the competition.

Woods' Ryder Cup record dropped to 13-20-3 and 9-16-1 in team matches.

"I think early in the week, he looked a little tired," U.S. captain Jim Furyk said of Woods. "His pace looked a little bit slow walking; I think that's expected coming off a big win. You have to think emotionally what he put into his comeback to this season, the amount of golf he played leading up, trying to make the Ryder Cup team, trying to, basically, almost win the FedEx Cup. I mean, he put a lot of work and effort into it and played a lot more golf than he's used to.

"And physically, I think Tiger's pretty fit, but that takes a mental toll, and I think he was a little tired earlier this week. The idea to rest him on Friday afternoon was a good one. I think he was tired. It allowed him to maybe get some energy back, watch his teammates play a little bit, provide a spark as a veteran leader. And you know, we came out today and decided to play him 36. I think his style of game lends itself very well for foursomes. I think he can control the ball very well. That's what you need."

It was Woods' misfortune that he went up against Fleetwood and Molinari in each match. It didn't help that his partners, Reed and DeChambeau, contributed little. And then his own game was not up to the standard of a week ago, when he won his 80th PGA Tour title and finished second in the FedEx Cup.

Woods might very well have nightmares of Molinari. He had to hand the Italian golfer the trophy for his own Quicken Loans National in July -- where Woods finished 10 strokes back. Woods was also overtaken by him at The Open at Carnoustie in July, where Molinari played with Woods during the final round and went on to capture the Claret Jug.

Now he's had two days of Ryder Cup matches with him, as well as Fleetwood, who has now earned the most points by any European Ryder Cup rookie.

"The three matches we played, they never missed a putt inside 10 to 12 feet," Woods said. "That's hard to do. Playing against a team like that, that's putting that well, you're going to have to make a lot of birdies, and we didn't."

At least Woods won't have to see either player on Sunday on the course. He will go up against Jon Rahm in the fourth singles match. Woods is 4-1-2 in singles, his last victory coming in 2010 -- against Molinari.