Tiger Woods says he intends to compete in this week’s Masters

Chicago, Apr 5 (EFE).- American golfing great Tiger Woods said Tuesday he plans to compete in this week’s Masters in Augusta, Georgia, in what would be his first tournament appearance since suffering a potentially career-ending leg injury in an automobile accident 14 months ago.

“As of right now, I feel like I’m going to play,” Woods said at a press conference in Augusta, where the first golf major of the season will be played from Thursday through Sunday.

The 15-time major champion, who said his recovery from the accident has gone well, has been practicing at the Augusta National Golf Club for several days and plans to play another nine holes on Wednesday.

He has not gone head-to-head against the world’s best players since November 2020.

“I love competing, and I feel like if I can still compete at the highest level, I’m going to,” Woods said, adding that he would not show up to an event unless he thought he could win it.

The 46-year-old, who trails only fellow American Jack Nicklaus (18) in major titles, suffered fractures to both the tibia and fibula in his right leg, as well as several other injuries, in a single-car accident in February 2021.

Competing in Augusta this year is a challenge that is distinct from others he has faced throughout his career, according to the five-time champion, who said he has learned to focus on what is necessary at different stages of his life.

Last November, Woods said in an interview with Golf Digest that the odds that his right leg would have to be amputated stood at “damn-near 50/50” in the wake of the crash.

He also spoke to that magazine about his future in a sport he once dominated.

“I think something that is realistic is playing the (PGA) Tour one day – never full time, ever again – but pick and choose, just like (American golf legend Ben) Hogan did,” he said then. “Pick and choose a few events a year and you play around that, you practice around that, and you gear yourself up for that.”

“I think that’s how I’m going to have to play it from now on. It’s an unfortunate reality, but it’s my reality. I understand it, and I accept it.”

Woods’ arrival to play a few practice rounds at Augusta, a storied venue where he became a global superstar with a memorable, record-setting victory in 1997, generated enormous expectations in the world of golf.

Now that his participation appears to be confirmed, interest in his performance starting Thursday is sure to be at a fever pitch. EFE


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