Tiger Woods makes his competitive comeback at the Hero World Challenge, just over seven months since ankle surgery following his miserable Masters withdrawal
- Tiger Woods has not played a tournament since withdrawing from The Masters
- The 15-time major winner underwent successful ankle surgery in April
- DailyMail.com provides all the latest international sports news
Tiger Woods made yet another long-awaited return to golf Thursday as he teed off at the Hero World Challenge Thursday.
Woods, 47, treated fans to a long-awaited glimpse of his game Thursday as he returned to the course for the first time in almost eight months.
Teeing up at the Hero World Challenge, the limited-field PGA Tour tournament he hosts in the Bahamas, Woods made yet another comeback from injury, playing competitively for the first time since April.
Woods’ last appearance came at The Masters earlier this year, when he battled through pain due to reaggravated plantar fasciitis from his 2021 car crash during a blustery third round at the undulated Augusta National before the elements forced him to withdraw, later having surgery on his ankle.
He has kept a relatively low profile since, until this week. Woods gave a pre-tournament press conference Tuesday ahead of heading out for Round One alongside longtime pal Justin Thomas at 11:52am ET Thursday.
Tiger Woods made another return to golf Thursday as he teed off at the Hero World Challenge
The 47-year-old, the main attraction in Albany, Bahamas, lured in a crowd to the first tee box
Woods, the main attraction, lured in a crowd to the first tee box, before he crushed his opening drive 326 yards down the middle of the fairway.
Even through the first two holes, Woods’ first birdie dropped at the par-five third. With 65 feet left into the green, the American showed off his deft hands with a neat chip on before sinking the 22-foot putt to move into the red.
The 15-time major winner claimed he didn’t know what to expect when he teed it up for the first time since April, admitting in his pre-tournament press conference on Tuesday that his game was ‘rusty’.
‘My game feels rusty,’ Woods admitted. ‘I haven’t played in a while and I have my subtalar fused, and so I’m excited to compete and play.
‘I’m just as curious as all of you are to see what happens because I haven’t done it in a while, and I can tell you this, I don’t have any of the pain that I had at Augusta or pre-that in my ankle. Other parts are taking the brunt of the load, so I’m a little bit more sore in other areas, but the ankle’s good. So that surgery was a success.’
However, he appeared to brush that rust off Wednesday as he warmed up for this week’s tournament in the Pro-Am competition.
He teed off in the first group at 8.20am alongside Dr. Pawan Munjal, the managing director and CEO of Hero MotoCorp who appeared alongside Woods in his pre-tournament press conference Tuesday morning.
The golfing legend striped his first tee shot down the middle of the fairway and went on to shoot an even-par with two birdies and two bogeys.
The 15-time major winner’s first birdie came at the par-five third to move one-under
Woods shared a laugh with fellow American San Burns (left) on the practice range
The golfing great teed off alongside longtime pal Justin Thomas at 11:52am ET Thursday
Wood only played nine holes Wednesday in order to conserve energy and rest his body ahead of the main round Thursday.
Woods isn’t at Albany Golf Club this week for a casual stroll around the fairways under the Bahamian sun. The icon reiterated once again that he wouldn’t compete unless he thought he had a shot at winning.
‘I love competing. I love playing. I miss being out here with the guys. I miss the camaraderie and the fraternity like atmosphere out here, and the overall banter,’ Woods said.
‘But what drives me is I love to compete. There will come a point in time, I haven’t come around to it fully yet, that I won’t be able to win again. When that day comes and I’ll walk.’
When pressed on whether that meant he still believes he can win again, which could break his tie with Sam Snead for the PGA Tour record wins, the golf icon adamantly responded: ‘Absolutely.’
Source: Read Full Article