With the first Major of the year just ahead, speculation is getting fuelled about a return of Tiger Woods to golf’s biggest stage. Will arguably the greatest golfer of all time, recently inducted into the Hall of Fame, make his comeback after his serious accident around 13 months ago at Augusta National, where he already celebrated his sporting revival in 2019? In any case, the 46-year-old is still listed in the field of players for the prestigious major and now the superstar has already flown to Augusta a week before the start of the tournament.
Tiger Woods: Practice round at Augusta National
On Tuesday morning local time, the private jet of the 15-time major winner landed at the local airport, in the afternoon Tiger Woods played a practice round at the legendary golf club at Magnolia Lane. Together with his fellow Justin Thomas and son Charlie, with whom he already excelled at the PNC Championship last December, Woods played all 18 holes at Augusta National. An insider told ESPN: “He looked good to me.”
Prior to that, the five-time Masters winner had also played a few rounds at his home club, The Medalist in Jupiter, Florida (USA), to test out the resilience of the right leg he had injured so badly. Now it’s time for the ultimate test at Augusta National, which not only demands a lot from the player in terms of golf, but also represents a real test of endurance due to its long paths and hilly courses.
“He’s gonna tee it up”
The fact that he was accompanied by his caddie, Joe LaCava, fuels hopes that Tiger Woods will make a comeback soon. “He’s gonna tee it up, I think,” Colt Knost, a former PGA Tour pro, said on “The Drop Zone” podcast, for example. “I know Joe and Tiger are close, but I don’t see Joe flying down to Florida just to carry his bag and hang out.” Knost also believes Woods would have already cancelled his participation in the first major of the year if he knew he couldn’t play.
Brad Faxon, a pro on the PGA Tour Champions, also has high hopes for Tiger, but thinks a return anytime soon is less likely. “I’m continually amazed by the things Tiger Woods can do. And, if he puts his mind together and feels OK, can he, ranked 944th in the world, come back and play at the Masters and then could he contend? It would be an unbelievable Ben Hogan-like success story.” the American said of the speculation. “My emotion wants him to play,” the 60-year-old explained, but “if I had to bet money I would say it’s probably less than 50/50.”
Participation at the Masters 2022?
Whether Tiger Woods will really make his comeback at the US Masters 2022 at Augusta National remains to be seen. As a former champion, the superstar is obviously seeded in the field and can take his time deciding whether or not to play until the tournament begins. The first Major of the year at Augusta National will be played from 7 to 10 April.