Well, he is back and the media have gone into meltdown over his return. It was great to see Tiger Woods play four rounds and certainly his swing looked like it was putting less strain on his troublesome back. The amount of attention the event received because of his presence will have other tournament organisers falling over themselves to get him to play in their event. The American TV company made sure that we saw as much of him as possible which was harsh on the other players in the field. It must have been hard for Rickie Fowler to feel that he was playing second fiddle when he had started with 7 birdies in a row!
What do we make of his comeback? All the analysts seemed to be extremely impressed with Tigers’ ball speed and at 180 mph he was amongst the fastest in the field and one of the longest hitters. Assuming he was fit there was very little doubt that he wouldn’t be able to find a golf swing that worked for him and it was evident that he had been able to put in a lot of work on his long game. He has undergone several swing changes over the years working with different coaches and his undoubted natural ability has enabled him to adjust to any new method that came along.
When he was in his prime he was probably the worlds best putter and there was nobody better at making clutch puts or for getting up and down from the most unlikely spots. Now in his forties the key to how far he can go with this comeback will depend very much on whether he can recapture that sort of form. Interestingly he holed a lot of birdie putts at the weekend, but he didn’t look so good when he was putting for a par when there would be more pressure on him to keep his score going. He wouldn’t be the first great golfer to experience such difficulties in middle age.
In conclusion it was great to see him back and the amount of interest he generated worldwide can only be good for the game of golf. However, lets not forget this was a non-ranking small field invitational event on a course he knows extremely well. Whether he can carry this form into a more normal regular tournament and how many of those tournaments he can play in will keep us all talking for weeks to come.
What did you make of it?