CARNOUSTIE. – American golf superstar Tiger Woods returns to The Open after three years saying yesterday that it is his best long-term chance to add to his 14 Major victories.
The 42-year-old – whose dominance of the sport ended with the emergence of his serial infidelity in 2010 and, from 2014, serial back problems which led to several operations – told a press conference two days ahead of teeing off at Carnoustie that links golf suited classy ageing golfers well.
The three-time Open champion, who has shown glimpses of form since returning to the circuit last December and has been in contention for a couple of titles this season, cited the examples of Tom Watson and Greg Norman, who in their 50’s came close to winning The Open in 2009 and 2008 respectively.
“As far as long-term, certainly I would say ‘Yes’, because of the fact you don’t have to be long to play on a links-style golf course,” said Woods, who has not played The Open since missing the cut in 2015.
“You get to places like Augusta where it is just a big ball park and the golf course outgrows you unfortunately. A links-style golf course you can just roll the ball.
“Distance becomes a moot point on a links golf course. Creativity plays such an important role.”
Woods, who is four off equalling Jack Nicklaus’s all-time majors record of 18, said even to be back competing at an Open represented a small victory.
“There were points when I never thought I’d play in this championship again,” he said.
“It’s great watching on TV but even better in person.
“But to come back to Carnoustie is a blessing. There were times when I didn’t think this was possible but, lo and behold, here I am in my third major this year.”
Woods, whose last victory in The Open came in 2006, says he is slowly but surely regaining his competitive edge. – AFP.