Tiger Woods planned summer around Open at St. Andrews
July 05, 2022
By Staff , PGATOUR.COM
- July 05, 2022
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Tiger Woods feels a special energy around the Old Course at St. Andrews. He has referred to it throughout his career as his favorite course in the world. He has won two Open Championships there.
This summer, he has made the 150th Open Championship at St. Andrews his priority.
Woods traveled to Europe a week early for this week’s JP McManus Pro-Am at Adare Manor GC in Ireland, and he said Tuesday that his decision to not compete at last month’s U.S. Open was made with an eye ahead.
“I had some issues with my leg, and it would have put this tournament in jeopardy, and so there’s no reason to do that,” Woods told reporters Tuesday. “This is a pretty historic Open that we are going to be playing. I’m lucky enough to be part of the past champions that have won there, and want to play there again, and I don’t know when they are ever going to go back while I’m still able to play at a high level.
“I want to be able to give it at least one more run at a high level.”
Woods has competed in five previous Open Championships at St. Andrews. His eight-stroke victory in 2000 was his second of four consecutive major titles in what is known as the “Tiger Slam.” His two-stroke victory at St. Andrews in 2005 was his second of three Open Championship titles; he also won in 2006 at Royal Liverpool.
Woods’ first Open Championship appearance came in 1995 at St. Andrews. He made the cut as an amateur and finished T68. He finished T23 at St. Andrews in 2010 and missed the cut in 2015.
“I’ve always loved this golf course, from the first time I played it back in ’95,” Woods said at the 2015 Open at St. Andrews. “I just love the creativity. You have to be able to hit all different types of shots. You need to have the right angles. Over the years of learning how to play the golf course under all different types of wind conditions, it changes greatly, and it's based on angles. You have to put the ball on certain sides of the fairways in order to get the ball close.
“To me, that type of thinking and the strategy that goes into that is something I've always loved.”
After suffering severe injuries to both legs in a single-car accident in February 2021, Woods made his competitive return at this year’s Masters, making the cut and finishing solo 47th. He also made the cut at the PGA Championship in May but withdrew after a third-round 79; he had cited leg soreness after the round.
Woods considered competing at last month’s U.S. Open at Brookline but withdrew prior to the tournament. He tweeted the week prior to the event that his body needed more time to get stronger for major championship golf.
He flew to Ireland for this week’s two-day JP McManus Pro-Am, held Monday and Tuesday, and he plans to spend time practicing off-site before traveling to St. Andrews.
"If you asked me last year whether I would play golf again, all of my surgeons would have said no,” Woods said Tuesday. “But here I am playing two major championships this year. I will always be able to play golf, whether it's this leg or someone else's leg or false leg or different body pieces that have been placed or fused. I'll always be able to play.”
For the chance to play next week at St. Andrews, he is very grateful.