Tiger Woods has admitted that he would like to play in next year’s Open Championship in St Andrews – but conceded that he may not be able to.
The 15-time major champion addressed the media in today ahead of the Hero World Challenge that he is hosting in the Bahamas.
It was Woods’ first time meeting the press since his near-fatal car crash in February.
The 45-year-old former world No.1 was keen to stress that there is no timeline for his return to competitive golf, stressing that he has “a long way to go” with his rehab from the accident, but he didn’t rule out being at St Andrews in some capacity next summer.
“I would love to play at St Andrews, no doubt about it,” said Woods, a winner of the Claret Jug in the ‘Home of Golf’ in both 2000 and 2005. “It’s my favourite golf course in the world. Even the Champions’ Dinner is really neat to be part of.
“I attended my first one in 2005 and Peter Thomson was still
alive at that time. I was sat next to him and to hear him tell his stories was awesome.
It’s like at the Masters. Those dinners are priceless. It’s an honour to be part of a room like that.
“I’d love to be able to play that Open Championship and hopefully I can.”
In a lengthy sit-down with the media, Woods reiterated what he said in an interview with GOLFTV’s Henni Koyack yesterday, that amputation of his right leg was “on the table” at one point in the immediate aftermath of the crash.
He also revealed that he has suffered no flashbacks to the accident, that he spent three months immobilised in a hospital bed, and that he has been able to play “full holes” to this point in his recovery.
Tellingly, he added that is “at peace” with the likelihood that his career at the very top level of the game is over.
very easy given that I was able to come back after the back fusion surgery
and do what I did,” he added. “I got that last major [the 2019 Masters]. I don’t foresee this leg ever
being what it used to be. The clock’s ticking. I’m not getting any
younger. I don’t have any desire to do that.
“I won’t have the opportunity to practice [the way I used to] given the condition of my leg. That’s okay.
“As far as playing at the tour level, I don’t know when that’s going to happen. I’ll play a round here and there. A hit and giggle.”
Jokingly, he added: “The USGA has ‘Play It Forward’? I really like that idea now. To see some of my shots fall out of the sky a lot shorter than they used to is eye-opening but at least I’m able to do it again.”