Tiger Woods’ performance at The Open tells us what could happen next

ST. ANDREWS, Scotland – Tiger Woods there may be play his last round of the Opening at St. Andrews on Friday, but he’s confident this won’t be his last start at one championship or another.

Due to a change in R&A, The Open likely won’t be returning to the old Courtyard at St. Andrews at the earliest until 2027. Then Woods will be 51. He’s not sure his surgically repaired or re-fused leg will be in good enough shape to still play at a high level at that point. .

Woods’ return to St. He played 6 out of 78 in the first round and one 3 out of 75 in the second. His total of 9 is outside the cutoff, so he won’t make it to the weekend at The Open’s 150th game.

“For me, it feels like this could be my last British Open at St. Andrews,” Woods said. “And the fans, the acclaim and the warmth, it’s an unbelievable feeling. I understand what Jack means. [Nicklaus] and Arnold [Palmer] experienced in the past. I finally feel the same way.

“They understand all about golf and what it takes to be an Open champion. And I’ve been lucky and lucky enough to win this twice here. And it feels so emotional, just because I don’t know what my health will be. And I feel like I’ll be able to play the British Open in the future, but I don’t know if I’ll be able to play long enough when it comes back. Come over here, am I still playing?”

After watching Woods compete in three majors over the past four months, what do we do about his return and what happens next?

Woods’ state game

It is still difficult to assess Woods’ game condition as it is clear that his surgically repaired right leg continues to bother him and he does not play golf much.

The 15-time major champion is currently 994th in the Official World Golf Ranking. He doesn’t seem ready to take part in any additional tournaments outside of the majors. After he skipped the US Open in June, it became clear that he didn’t feel like he even had to play at all of them. He will pick and choose his position in the future, depending on the course and how he feels.

Despite Woods’ disappointing score, there are some bright spots at St. Andrews. He drove 412 yards, the longest of any player on Thursday. He averaged 338.9 yards, ranking among the 25 best players on the field after two innings. He hit 65.6% fairway and 72.2% green in regulation.

Woods problems are constantly occurring and around the large grassy area of ​​the Old Course. He used to have the best short game in the world, but now that he plays so little, it can be difficult for him to turn those “feelings” on and off. He needs 70 shots and has 4 triples on 36 holes.

“My two-day match, I shared my mistakes,” Woods said. “I’m fighting again [Friday] to get the feeling of green. I left behind a lot of short putts again. Like [Thursday]. I hit a couple of poor shots, which ended in bad points. And, again, I never had anything happen. “

Woods’ big championship days could very well be in his rearview mirror. Then again, no one thought he’d win another major before he won his fifth blue coat with the 2019 Masters championship, but this comeback looks different. , more arduous.

Woods’ health condition

On Friday, Woods was asked if he could play other tournaments outside of the majors to better prepare for those events, the ones that really matter. He said he didn’t think his body could handle it.

“I understand all of that,” Woods said. “I understand I have to suffer more, but it’s hard just to walk and play 18 holes. People don’t know what I have to go through and hours of work on my body, before and after-[round], every day to do what I just did. That’s what people don’t understand – they don’t see. And then you think about playing more events on it, it’s hard just to do what I did. “

Woods has said at the Masters and PGA Championships that his surgically repaired right leg will get stronger over time. Earlier this week, he said his legs are getting better and he seems to be walking more confidently. He walked 58 holes on the Old Course before the start of the tournament.

“Play Augusta, I don’t know,” he said. “My foot isn’t fit to play 72 holes. It just ran out of gas. But it’s different now. It’s gotten so much stronger, so much better. Hopefully it stays that way. But again, Like I said, there’s a lot of hardware in there which makes it a bit of a challenge.”

Since Woods was so badly injured in a car crash outside Los Angeles in February 2021, he later said that doctors almost had to amputate his right leg, it’s easy to forget that the body was His house contained more hardware than a Homeware Warehouse.

About a month before the wreck, Woods had his fifth back surgery in seven years. This is his fourth microdissection, supposedly to relieve nerve pain in his lower back, and his first back surgery since spinal fusion in September. 4, 2017. He also had surgery on his left knee and missed a lot of time because of his leg, Achilles tendon. , elbow and neck injuries.

“Well, my body can definitely get better, but not by much,” he told The Open. “It’s been through a lot, and at 46 you’re not quite as healed as at 26. So that’s what it is like.”

What’s next for Tiger?

Woods did not say when he will appear in the next tournament. He’s not committed to any events, although it’s hard to imagine he won’t play in the World of Heroes Challenge in the Bahamas in November. He’s the event and tournament organizer. benefit his foundation and other charities.

It would also be a surprise if Woods doesn’t play in the PNC Championships in Orlando, Florida, on December 15-18 with his son, Charlie. The couple finished second in last year’s event. This is Woods’ first time competing since the car accident.

Woods’ opponents hope they’ll see more of them on the PGA Tour.

“Wish him nothing but the best,” Jon Rahm speak. “Obviously, he’s done amazing things here and amazing things everywhere in the world. At this point, [I’m] hope he can stay healthy and live a normal life from now on. You can tell he’s in a lot of pain. I know he’s premised there and he’s trying to get around normally, but you can tell at certain times going down some hills. You could tell he was suffering.

“So hopefully they can – not completely fix it, I don’t know if they can – but minimize it and [he can] have a normal life. It is clear that it is possible to have an ordinary life like Tiger Woods. “

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