Keegan Bradley considers his runner-up finish to Tiger Woods at Firestone a victory of sorts (Photo: keeganbradley.com)

Keegan Bradley considers his runner-up finish to Tiger Woods at Firestone a victory of sorts (Photo: keeganbradley.com)

Keegan Bradley had nothing but awe for the way Tiger Woods lapped the field at last week’s Bridgestone Invitational on his way to his eighth victory at Firestone Country Club, and the 2011 PGA champ can’t wait to play with the world No. 1 at Oak Hill.

“It’s very tough to give Tiger that many shots,” Bradley said Sunday, as Woods, who began the finale at Firestone with a seven-shot lead and finished at 15-under, was finishing his week. “The round he shot on Friday [a course record-tying 61] was pretty special.

“You know, I hate to sit here and go on and on about how good he is, but he is,” said Bradley, who finished the Bridgestone T2, seven shots back of Woods, who picked up his 79th PGA Tour win. “It’s difficult because I really want to get up there and contend with him, but he’s just -‑ this week he’s playing really well.”

With Woods at his dominating best, Bradley, who failed to defend his 2012 Bridgestone title, considered the way he played a victory among those vying for second place.

“In my eyes I almost won,” said the New England native who owns three tour victories. “I almost defended, considering what Tiger is doing.  But I really enjoy playing with Tiger. He’s super great to me, and I look forward to playing with him and Davis [Love III] in the PGA next week.”

The trio will tee off No. 10 at 8:35 a.m. ET on Thursday and start Friday’s second round on the first tee at 1:45 p.m. Woods, as even the most casual of golf fans knows, is seeking his first major championship in five years. Bradley won his first major in 2011 when he won the PGA Championship as a rookie.

 

Emily Kay is a regular contributor to New England Golf Monthly. You may follow Kay on Twitter @golfexaminer