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Tiger Woods will compete at Hero World Challenge

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Tiger Woods will compete at Hero World Challenge

    Written by Staff @PGATOUR

    Tiger Woods will play the Hero World Challenge later this month, his first PGA TOUR start since undergoing ankle surgery in the spring.

    The 82-time TOUR winner announced his commitment Saturday on Instagram. The Hero World Challenge will be contested Nov. 30-Dec. 3 at Albany, Bahamas.

    Woods has held a spot for himself at the Hero World Challenge in the past. The initial field release included only 19 players, leading to speculation that the last spot could again be earmarked for Woods if his recovery progressed.

    It appears that was the plan. Momentum was building for Woods’ return. He was on-site pre-tournament at the World Wide Technology Championship in Mexico, contested at the Woods-designed El Cardonal at Diamante. While in Mexico, Woods visited with contemporaries including Stewart Cink – who revealed to Golf Channel’s George Savaricas that Woods said he had returned to practice, opining that Woods was in “go mode.” A few days later, Woods walked and caddied 54 holes for son Charlie at the Notah Begay III Junior Golf National Championship.

    Tiger Woods' all-time best shots from Hero World Challenge

    Woods hasn’t competed since undergoing ankle surgery in late April, shortly after withdrawing from the Masters during the third round due to plantar fasciitis. The 15-time major winner was seen chipping at Liberty National in September, and a video was captured of Woods hitting balls at The Hay, the short course Woods designed at Pebble Beach, during the TGR Jr. Invitational in October.

    Woods has made five TOUR starts since a 2021 car accident in which he suffered multiple breaks in his right tibia and fibula and damaged his feet. He has made the cut four times but completed 72 holes just twice; walking has proven understandably difficult, particularly on uneven terrain. Woods has shown improvement in recent weeks and recently told the Associated Press, “my ankle is fine,” adding “that pain is completely gone. It’s the other areas that have been compensated for.”

    Woods has not yet committed to play the PNC Championship, Dec. 14-17, with Charlie. Tiger and Charlie Woods have paired in the last three editions of the PNC Championship, a two-player best-ball event that allows competitors to use carts. Team Woods finished seventh in 2020, second in 2021 and eighth in 2022.

    The PNC Championship appeared to be a natural, easy-going place to make his return, given the ability to use a cart and its scramble format. Instead, Woods opted to throw himself right back into PGA TOUR competition against an elite field.

    Lucas Glover and Justin Rose were also announced as Hero World Challenge exemptions on Saturday, replacing Patrick Cantlay and Xander Schauffele.

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