The tendency for the collective golf world right now is to watch this Tiger Woods comeback with cautious optimism. Can he keep it together all four days? Can he avoid any blow-up holes that could derail a solid round? After Thursday’s opening-round 69, most of us would have signed for an even-par 72 on Saturday (AEDT).

Instead, Tiger has lit up the front nine in his second round, going out in five-under 31 to take the solo lead. And he capped it off with a vintage performance at the par-5, 551-metre ninth hole, starting with a rope of a drive that left him just 248 metres from the green. On his approach, he pulled out a 3-wood and hit it sky high, so high in fact that he and Golf Channel analyst Jim “Bones” Mackay lost sight of it:

If there was any doubt about how Tiger’s back was feeling, this mammoth 3-wood to within 20-feet quieted those doubts. As it was in the air, Woods gave a classic reaction to his caddie, Joe LaCava, saying: “Talk to me, Joey,” to which Lacava replied, “get up a yard.” These guys are in mid-season form!