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Tiger Woods hedged a bit when asked whether he planned on playing the Masters this week but appeared to be hopeful.
“As of right now, I feel like I am going to play,” he told reporters Tuesday.
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Woods said he plans on playing another nine holes on Wednesday in preparation for Thursday’s first round in what would be his first event against high-level competition since the 2020 Masters.
Woods said he did feel like he could win the Masters and the hard part about him playing was whether he was going to be able to continue to walk the course.
Woods played the PNC Championship in December 2021 and December 2020 alongside his son Charlie.
The 46-year-old golfer announced his determination to play after a practice round on Monday and another Tuesday morning prior to his news conference.
Woods has made clear his days of playing competitively every weekend are over. He said at Tuesday’s press conference he wouldn’t be gearing up to play if he didn’t think he could win.
Woods shattered bones in his right leg, needed a rod in his tibia to stabilize the injuries, and needed screws and pins in his ankle after being involved in a car crash in February 2021.
He told Golf Digest in November he will likely never compete on the PGA Tour regularly again.
“I think something that is realistic is playing the Tour one day – never full time, ever again – but pick and choose, just like Mr. (Ben) Hogan did. Pick and choose a few events a year and you play around that, “Woods told Golf Digest. “You practice around that, and you gear yourself up for that. I think that’s how I’m going to have to play it from now on. It’s an unfortunate reality, but it’s my reality. And I understand it, and I accept it . “
Last summer, he was seen practicing his swing and made a few appearances at golf courses and events before taking time to practice at Augusta National. He and his son finished second to Team Daly at the PNC Championship. It has been his only competition of any kind since the 2020 Masters.
TIGER WOODS AT THE MASTERS: REMEMBERING THE GOLF LEGEND’S FEATS AT AUGUSTA
Woods has made 23 career starts at the Masters, where he has 14 top-10 finishes. He put on his first green jacket in 1997 at age 21 and again during a career comeback in 2019 at age 43.
Woods also won the Masters in 2001, 2002 and 2005. He last played in the tournament in 2020. He didn’t play last year as he was recovering from injuries suffered in the car crash.
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The first round of the 86th Masters begins April 7 and runs through April 10. Hideki Matsuyama is the defending champion.