The Champions Dinner is a Masters tradition that can be traced back to the 1950s. Tiger Woods himself hosted the dinner in November as the defending champion. Now, heading into the 2021 Masters tournament, the Augusta National Golf Club left an open chair at the dinner to honor him in his absence.
Golfers everywhere can appreciate the contributions Tiger Woods has made to the sport. And as the 1997, 2001, 2002, 2005, and 2019 Masters champion recovers from a car crash that occurred back in February, the lack of his presence at the tournament is being felt by his peers and fans alike.
Tiger himself even chimed in, letting everyone know how he was feeling about missing the event.
“I’ll miss running up [Dustin Johnson]’s bill at the Champions Dinner tonight. It’s still one of my favorite nights of the year,” Tiger tweeted.
Dustin Johnson responded, “Will miss having you here. This week isn’t the same without you.”
For those who are unaware, Dustin Johnson is the current defending champion of the tournament and is the #1 ranked golfer in the world. Accordingly, he is the favorite to win this year. Though a healthy Tiger may have had something to say about that.
Reliving Tiger Woods’ 2019 Masters Victory
Tiger Woods is widely considered to be the most talented golfer of all time. Not the greatest, mind you, as he is still chasing Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 major championship victories. With 15 major wins, Tiger has his work cut out for him if he wants to be the greatest on paper.
And that’s what made his 2019 Masters victory so special. He hadn’t won a major tournament since 2008.
There was a time when it looked as if Tiger was going to blow every record out of the water. But a series of injuries and setbacks forced the golfer to change his approach to the game. As a result, Woods struggled to get back to his dominant level of play.
Woods’ major championship drought led many in the golf world to write him off. Moreover, people didn’t think that he would ever be able to overcome all the damage to his body or the vices with which he struggled in his personal life.
Then came the 2019 Masters. In his iconic red shirt, Tiger won his first major in more than 10 years in comeback fashion and kept the dream alive.
You can relive the legendary moment below.
Will Tiger ever break Jack Nicklaus’ record?