Tiger Woods says he's on the 'other side' of pain, loving life

Hero World Challenge Golf Betting Tips

Hero World Challenge Golf Betting Tips

The return of Tiger Woods to competitive play this week has captured the attention of the golfing world as he prepares to tee it up at the Hero World Challenge at the Albany Course in New Providence in the Bahamas.

Is he ready? Is this the start of something real?

DJ got some exposure to the 14-time major victor leading up to a return to action after 10 months on the sidelines rehabbing his surgically repaired back.

Woods is more patient than the rest of us. The joy inside him is apparent.

The Hero World Challenge is a non-official money event of the PGA Tour but it does offer world ranking points given that there is a distinct qualifying criteria.

Ah, yes. Therein lies the tricky part ... Most left the island with a nice sliver of optimism that the Great One could be, well, at least very good again.

What's in Tiger Woods' bag this week? Right now, that's not even a small part of his thought process.

Back to the here and now.

That's it. Four days in Albany. Just hitting shots. I haven't really had a scorecard in my hand in a while. The wind is supposed to be low this weekend and if it blows 30 miles an hour, I'm going to have to hit some shots. He's not the longest of hitters, and I expect more people to take shots on Tommy Fleetwood and Kevin Chappell in this price range. I may have to blast a few.

"I know everyone was on me about the chipping difficulties I had".

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Woods' answer: "Well, I always knew that I was - I always thought - that I was tough mentally".

"I'm loving life now", the former world No.1 said. I don't know if "retirement" is the word but I wondered if I would ever play golf with my friends again. I had not done that in close to two years as my back was hurting so much.

"I didn't realize the slow, degrading nature of my back and how bad it had gotten to".

Tiger Woods, pictured after he withdrew from the Omega Dubai Desert Classic last February.

The event is being played for the 18th occasion and host Woods is a five-time victor and four-time runner-up. Woods continued, "I was just trying to go from point A to point B in my house". Charlie was there when I won in Akron, but he doesn't remember it, he was too young.

"My kids were there at the par-three contest the last time I played at Augusta, but that's different". "They've never seen me in action".

"Go out there, hit and giggle, play for some denominations and have some fun. But the majority of the public, the media, you wouldn't understand it unless you have lived it".

He'll have no problem using this week as a test to see where he measures up to the game's elite. Later, Woods wanted to know what the experience was like for them.

Hopefully, it's a start.

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