The sports world waits with bated breath as golf superstar Tiger Woods continues to publicly mull his Masters status for next weekend’s tournament. Just 14 months ago, Woods suffered a catastrophic car accident in California that nearly cost him his leg. His golfing future faded into a distant hopefulness as fans of Woods first worried for his life, and then for his ability to ever walk again following the crash. Now just over a year later, through absolute determination and willpower, arguably the best player in golf history may also prove himself the toughest.
Tiger Woods gets an annual invitation to The Masters for life, so his eligibility to play next week is certain, Yahoo Sports writes. Only he knows, however, if his body can take the abuse of thousands of swings and multiple miles walked every day in the south Georgia heat of competition. As a result, every little shred of evidence that he could play gets gobbled up by media and fans alike; all of whom want to witness perhaps the greatest comeback in sports history.
According to reports, Woods spent time walking the course’s steep hills last week. He also played well enough to keep the door open for an early return to professional golf — on golf’s biggest stage, coincidentally.
“I will be heading up to Augusta today to continue my preparation and practice. It will be a game-time decision on whether I compete,” Woods tweeted Sunday morning. He also congratulated Anna Davis, winner of the Augusta National Women’s Amateur.
Tiger Woods last won The Masters in 2019, which completely altered his legacy
Because The Masters is invitation only, Tiger Woods is not withholding a spot from an alternate waiting for a phone call. His last professional tournament played was The Masters, as well, back in November of 2020 due to the COVID delay that year. His massive car accident came about four months later, in February 2021.
Since 1997, Woods has won five green jackets at Augusta. His most recent win came in 2019 — the highest-rated Masters in history. He played in the tournament every year from 1995-2013; but then missed three of the next four Masters due to injuries.
After months of professional health treatments and sporadic public updates, Woods emerged in December of last year for a public appearance. He played alongside son Charlie in a traditional parent-child event which fans loved. Woods used a cart throughout that event (which is forbidden in professional golf); declining to hit several shots and walking gingerly the longer the tournament went on.
Though he’s always shown incredible talent for the game, Woods’ legacy may have transformed from prodigy into fighter. He has returned from multiple injuries and public scandals that could have derailed other careers completely. His 2019 Masters win also proved many doubters wrong who lauded Woods for his endurance; but never thought he would win another major.