Tiger Woods all but confirmed that he will play at The Masters, the first golf major of the year, just over a year after a car crash took him out of action.
Woods was rushed to hospital in February 2021 after being involved in a single-car crash in Los Angeles, California, and had to be cut out of his car.
The 15 time major winner shattered the tibia and fibula bones in his right leg in multiple places and needed several surgeries following the incident.
Nearly a year on he admitted that he wouldn't be returning to the PGA Tour full time, despite playing a father-son tournament at the end of 2021, his first time back in action.
However, ahead of The Masters, the five time winner revealed that he would be playing, telling a press conference, "As of right now I feel like I am going to play."
The 46-year-old said that he intended to play nine more holes on Wednesday, as part of his warm up to the event, but his words said that it would have little impact on his decision.
It seems that only something going wrong during that final practice round would Woods not play his 24th Masters tournament, having missed the 2014, 16 and 17 editions.
Woods was asked about how he never wanted to turn up to a tournament without a chance of winning, and asked if he thought he could win a 16th major, the American said, "I do."
He will play alongside South African Louis Oosthuizen, who was the runner up at the first major of the year in 2012, and Chile's Joaquin Niemann in his first round on Thursday.
Tiger Woods believes he can win a sixth Green Jacket this week. #themasters pic.twitter.com/WHjD4BcOcx— The Masters (@TheMasters) April 5, 2022
Woods is celebrating the 25th anniversary of his first major, when he won his first Green Jacket at Augusta in 1997, but was not expected to play ahead of the tournament.
He turned up for a practice round on Monday and thousands of fans surrounded the fairways as he teed off, to see how his body reacted to the round.
Considered by many as the greatest golfer of all time, Woods won 14 majors from 97 to 2008, only failing to win one in three calendar years in that time, 1998, 2003 and 2004.
However after that a run of injuries and a loss of form saw him fail to win for years, and it looked like he may never win another major.
In 2019 he defied the odds to claim his 15th major, leaving him only three behind Jack Nicklaus' record of 18. His last official tournament was the 2020 edition of the Masters, which was delayed until November due to Covid, before his crash months after.
Whether it's just starting the tournament on Thursday, making the cut to play the weekend or somehow winning on Sunday evening, Woods' comeback this weekend is one of the great comebacks in sport.
Featured Image Credit: PA/The Masters
Topics: Golf, Tiger Woods