Tiger Not Out Of The ‘Woods’ Yet

Tiger Woods is returning to the PGA Tour to defend his title at the WGC Accenture Match Play Championship on Wednesday.

By Bryan Mongeau-Eastmond

NEW YORK (RushPRnews) 2/23/09 When news dropped that Tiger Woods would be returning to the PGA Tour, the entire golf world breathed a huge sigh of relief.  In fact, golf has been holding its breath for nearly eight months after the game’s leading player underwent season-ending surgery to reconstruct cartilage damage in his left knee.

Woods, a three-time winner of the Accenture Match Play Championship, has not played competitively since his playoff win over Rocco Mediate in last year’s U.S. Open at Torrey Pines.

“I’m looking forward to the challenge. I haven’t really been able to test [my knee] in a competitive environment yet. I do feel good. It’s just a matter of getting out there and performing in a tournament and dealing with the pressures of a tournament. That is something that I haven’t done in a while.”

The choice to come back and play in the AMPC after such a serious injury raised questions on rust and about his decision making.

“It was either going to be the Accenture Match Play or Doral,” said Woods. “My practice schedule has been very positive. I felt that this was the time to get back and play again.”

Tiger’s wish to tee off again could not be better for the PGA Tour, which has seen television ratings plunge since his absence.

“We are delighted that Tiger is returning to competition and look forward to watching him compete next week,” said Commissioner Tim Finchem.

Apparently Finchem wasn’t the only one. The reaction of players who found out that their peer and consequently archrival was returning to the course pleased everyone.

“My phone was blowing up quite a bit. It was actually pretty funny. Most of our friends were either saying it’s great to have you back or giving me a lot of grief,” said Woods.

It appears that Woods is ready to compete against those same guys and has his sights set on standing there on Sunday with the trophy in his hands.