The Return of Tiger Woods In 2018
Perhaps the most famous player ever to grace professional golf’s fairways, Tiger Woods has played his way back into form after nearly a decade of struggles – both on and off the course.
Woods’ career took a nosedive at the end of 2009 after he crashed his car outside his home in Florida. In the weeks that followed, reports of multiple affairs dominated the news, tainting his reputation and losing him lucrative sponsorships.
He had since struggled to return to form that in any way resembled his previous highs. However, 2018 has been something of a watershed year for the golfing legend.
Tiger Woods has secured seven top-10 finishes in the 18 events he has competed in this year. This notably includes two top-10 finishes in the four Major tournaments of 2018. A sparkling final round of 64 took him to 2nd place at the PGA Championship in August, and it seemed a matter of time before he would secure his first PGA Tour victory since 2013.
He finally achieved this feat in September, winning the Tour Championship in Atlanta by two-shots over Billy Horschel, and ending his 1876-day streak without a win.
Tiger Woods’ career had previously seemed destined to outshine that of any other golfer in the history of the sport. By 2008, he had already won a remarkable 14 Majors. He looked likely to usurp Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 career Major titles - until his career fell off the rails.
He also boasts the record for most consecutive weeks as the number 1 ranked golfer in the world (281) as well as the most weeks spent ranked number 1 in total (683).
Tiger is 42 years old, which still gives him enough time to surge past Nicklaus’ record – a feat that would surely cement his place as the best golfer of all time. Nicklaus himself believes that Woods could still win the required 5 majors to surpass Nicklaus’ record, and has also suggested that Woods could still compete at the highest level for a decade.
Any chance Woods has of breaking Nicklaus’ record will rely heavily upon the health of his back. Woods has already had four back surgeries between 2014 and 2017, and will hope that his back problems have finally come to an end.
These hopes resonate throughout the golfing world – a fit and in-form Tiger Woods adds another dimension to the sport. 2018 was the year of Woods’ return to form – will 2019 be the year he wins another Major?