As he prepares to play in his first Masters since 2015, Tiger Woods says he feels like he has been given “a second chance at life” after overcoming the back injuries that threatened to end his career prematurely
In an interview on his own website, Woods, 42, says that he is excited to play at Augusta National next week and that he is going there with the intention of winning a fifth green jacket.
Such a prospect would have been dismissed as fanciful even just a few short months ago, with the former world No.1 struggling to recover his fitness following spinal fusion surgery last year.
However, having made an encouraging start to the season – with three consecutive top 15 finishes in his last three starts – Woods is now rated as the man to beat at Augusta by several leading bookmakers.
“I got a second chance on life,” he told Mark Soltau. “I am a walking miracle.
“I’m just really looking forward to playing. It’s the best run tournament in the world. The golf course, the patrons, the entire atmosphere. It’s a golfer’s heaven.”
Woods also revealed that, last week, he played two practice rounds in two days at Augusta, where he was joined for nine holes each day by Bryson DeChambeau. The cold conditions, he said, made the course play “brutally long”.
Adding that he might play in the Par-3 Contest on Wednesday, Woods said that he has one goal next week.
“I’m just there to win,” he said. ““I’ve been better with each week I’ve competed. A little more crisp. I’m starting to put the pieces together.”