Eldrick “Tiger” Woods, winner of 15 major championships, will tee it up for the first time since he was injured in a horrific car crash, next week at the PNC Championship with his son Charlie.
In February of this year, Woods was in a single vehicle crash that left him with broken bones and compound fractures in both legs. The fact that he’s walking and can play a round of golf is pretty incredible.
Although it’s been a long and challenging year, I am very excited to close it out by competing in the @PNCchampionship with my son Charlie. I’m playing as a Dad and couldn’t be more excited and proud.
— Tiger Woods (@TigerWoods) December 8, 2021
It’s a 36-hole event for major championship winners and their families.
Woods and his son Charlie played the event last year and tied for seventh. The elder Woods hasn’t played competitively since.
Tiger spoke to the media last week for the first time since his crash. He described a lengthy year of rehab and a future in golf that will never be what it once was for the all time great.
“I’m lucky to be alive and also have a limb,” Woods said. “As far as playing at the tour level, I don’t know when that’s going to happen,” he said. “Now, I’ll play a round here or there, a little hit and giggle, I can do something like that. The USGA suggested Play It Forward [the tees]. I really like that idea now. I don’t like the tees on the back. I like Play It Forward. Come on, let’s move it up, let’s move it up.”
Playing with his son will bring Tiger much joy no doubt. The prospect of winning 18-plus majors and eclipsing Jack Nicklaus is no longer a possibility, and Woods seems at peace with that.
“I got that last major, and I ticked off two more events along the way,” he said. “I don’t foresee this leg ever being what it used to be, hence I’ll never have the back what it used to be, and clock’s ticking. I’m getting older, I’m not getting any younger. All that combined means a full schedule and a full practice schedule and the recovery that would take to do that … no, I don’t have any desire to do that.
“But to ramp it up for a few events a year and, as I alluded to Mr. [Ben] Hogan did, and he did a pretty good job of it, and there’s no reason that I can’t do that and feel ready. I may not be tournament-sharp in a sense that I haven’t played tournaments, but I think if you practice correctly and you do it correctly, that I’ve come off surgeries before. So I know the recipe for it, I’ve just got to get to a point where I feel comfortable enough where I can do that again.”
For gold fans, and fans of the great Tiger Woods, it looks like there will be an adjustment to a new Tiger. Gone is the man that would stalk the fairways in his Sunday red hitting blistering irons and sinking putts, to vanquish opponents.
If you want to catch a glimpse of maybe the greatest golfer of all time, it may be just father-son tourneys with Charlie and once a year a big one on the PGA tour.
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