RORY McIlroy, bidding for his second straight FedExCup Playoffs victory, birdied his final two holes to move into a four-way tie for the lead at the BMW Championship.
McIlroy was tied with Webb Simpson, Graham DeLaet and Bo Van Pelt, who grew up about an hour away from Crooked Stick, all shot 64s. Woods finished with a 65.
“I scored today; Rory played beautifully,” Woods said.
“I was very fortunate to post the number that I shot.”
Rory, who tops the FedExCup standings after his win at the Deutsche Bank Championship on Monday, added; “I’m not going out there trying to beat Tiger or anyone else. I just try to shoot the best score possible.”
Graeme McDowell, needing a strong finish this week to make the season ending Tour Championship called a two shot penalty on himself playing his final hole of the day to drop him to four under par.
McDowell found the greenside bunker on the par five ninth [his 18th] and brushed a leaf in his backswing, incurring the penalty.
Back on the European Tour, Graeme Storm surged to the top of the leaderboard on day one of the KLM Open, as Martin Kaymer made a timely return to form.
A faultless 63 enabled the Englishman to reach seven under at Hilversumsche GC, putting him two clear of Kaymer, who showed plenty of positive signs ahead of The Ryder Cup, Fabrizio Zanotti and Raphaël Jacquelin.
Kaymer’s European team-mate Peter Hanson was one of six players tied for fifth on four under, while Nicolas Colsaerts - one of José María Olazábal’s Captain’s picks - birdied the last to go round in 70.
But leading the way is Storm, who currently lies 114th in The Race to Dubai and faces a battle to retain his European Tour card.
In addition to struggling for form he has been forced to cope with tragedy away from the course, with his grandfather passing away prior to June’s BMW International Open.
“I’ve had a tough run and it’s all been a bit of a struggle. I’ve just not been enjoying it,” Storm explained.
“I lost my grandfather on the Wednesday morning of Germany and since then I have really struggled. I kind of kept it to myself what happened but it hit me really hard.You can get punished round here but I played the best I have probably played all year. I’m just happy to get a round like that under my belt after recent months.”
Kaymer and Jacquelin each benefited from eagles at the par five 12th en route to rounds of 65, although the former - champion here in 2010 - insists there is still hard work ahead as he seeks to recapture his best form.
“Two years ago when I won here was very nice but that was a period of time I could have played golf with my eyes closed,” the German explained.
“Now is a different time when I need to work and it takes a lot of energy and a lot of concentration. I really need to focus on the things on the range. Two years ago it was more automatic.”
Zanotti, who tied for second when Kaymer triumphed at this venue, avoided any dropped shots while Simon Dyson - three times a winner of this event and the defending champion - began the week with a 70 that featured an eagle on 18.
Gareth Maybin carded a one under par 71, but Darren Clarke endured another tough day finishing on two over.