This has been a year to forget for Tiger Woods. It’s been one setback after another: a disastrous and short-lived season, a highly publicized run-in with the law, and a lingering back injury that brought about all this mess in the first place.
The former world No. 1 just completed an intensive program to manage his pain and sleep medication. This comes after his arrest in May when he was found asleep at the wheel of his car with two flat tires. The footage released showed a seemingly drunk Woods failing a DUI test. However, it turns out his state was due to a poor reaction to his medication.
Some of these problems are ones Tiger has dealt with for years, so will he be able to return to form? Woods has won 14 major titles and held the number one spot for 683 weeks, but that was awhile ago. His most recent tournament win was in 2013, and he hasn’t claimed a major championship, the US Open, since 2008.
But that isn’t deterring him. The current world No. 970 plans to continue right after he resolves his back issues. But it won’t come easy: Woods hasn’t entered a tournament in since February, and has played just three times in the past two years.
What does the future hold for Mr. Woods? Here are the odds.
After 2018: 19/1
Will Woods stage a return after his recovery? Will he ever fully recover?
He’s had nagging back issues for years, undergoing his first surgery in 2014 and having three more since. He’s been out since February and recovery seems to be going slowly. If he does return, it’ll probably be by year-end 2018. But if he doesn’t, there’s a decent chance he’ll decide to retire.
Like mentioned, Woods hasn’t won a major since 2008. Since then, he’s had a second place and a few fourth place finishes. He missed all of 2016 and was cut from every major in 2015 except for the Masters, where he finished 17th.
Even if Woods makes a full recovery, he faces some stiff competition from the new crop of golfers who’ve taken over.
Woods could lower his sights and focus on some less prestigious prizes, but even then, he hasn’t won a tournament since 2013. It was a good year for him, though. He ended the season with five wins, making him the year’s top earner.
If Woods is able to reclaim his 2013 form, another tournament win is definitely on the cards.
Woods first dropped out of the top 100 in 2015, and it’s been downhill ever since. Currently, he’s ranked a dismal 970. An in-form Woods, even at 41, would easily break the top 100. The question is, will he ever regain his form? Only time will tell.
Photo Credit: Keith Allison [CC BY 2.0 (Creative Commons)]
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