Your chances of being asked to join Augusta National, to be strolling a sacred drift during some stately Masters week as a member, are forever improved than Tiger Woods withdrawal a premises with a fifth immature coupler Apr 12.
That is not meant to be harsh, some-more a demeanour during a large design and a huge expectations that a male ceaselessly sets for himself, usually to be treated as an comprehensive disaster if he doesn’t accommodate them.
Now is not a time to be meditative about drastic comebacks or spectacle short-game cures.
If a 47 holes of contest golf this year, a aborted comebacks of 2014, and a altogether miss of foe have taught us anything about Woods, it is that we are good past a indicate of entrance his game, his tournaments, with high hopes.
And nowhere is that some-more a box than during Augusta National in a entrance days.
Woods finally motionless on Friday that he would play a Masters, where he will finish a nine-week widen in that he didn’t strike a singular rival golf shot, pledging not to lapse until his diversion was contest ready.
Whether that is a box will be a theme of discuss as a year’s initial vital championship unfolds, though given a several starts and stops, problem we witnessed in Phoenix and San Diego and reports on a standing of his game, to consider that Woods will be in a brew subsequent weekend is folly.
Golf simply doesn’t work that way, generally given a struggles Woods has endured for some 18 months.
“The biggest disproportion with Tiger and a rest is a man can uncover adult on a West Coast not personification good though wanting to play and be pretty anonymous,” pronounced ESPN golf researcher and 13-time PGA Tour leader Paul Azinger. “Tiger can't be anonymous. Every singular shot he takes is documented and that’s a whole ‘nother animal, too. He unequivocally does understanding with a lot.”
Augusta National will be no different. There will be a referendum on each shot, each hole. His pitching and chipping will be scrutinized down to a tallness of a tightly-mown grass. If he misses a fairway, call an ambulance.
But really, how good does anyone consider Woods should be during a Masters?
The final time he played good in a contest was during a 2013 World Challenge, where he mislaid in a playoff to Zach Johnson. Prior to that, he had finished third during a European Tour eventuality in Turkey. He had a plain Presidents Cup, won a WGC-Bridgestone. Again, that’s in a timeframe of 16 to 18 months ago.
Since? A missed 54-hole cut during Torrey Pines. A muted display in Dubai. A withdrawal with behind pain during a Honda Classic. Barely creation it to a tie for 25th during Doral. Back surgery. A three-month layoff. Perhaps a too reckless lapse that enclosed a missed cut, a tie for 69th during a Open Championship, another damage withdrawal, a missed cut during a PGA Championship and another prolonged break.
Woods returned during a World Challenge in Dec with a new, giveaway representation though also combined chipping problems that were deliberate an aberration. When those issues had not been bound in Jan and he shot his career-worst measure of 82, it called for another reassessment.
There have been several leaked reports about his diversion during a Medalist, his home course, and in dual trips to Augusta National in a past week, some promising, others not scarcely so.
Golfweek reported that Woods kept measure in his Tuesday Augusta use turn and shot 74 with 5 birdies and some uneven chipping. That means Woods had 13 holes in that he was 7 over par. It’s only one round, though …
Then there is Augusta National itself, one of a many formidable courses in a universe around a greens. The parsimonious lies, a brutally quick greens, a slopes — all of that can make for perplexing chip shot nerves in a best of circumstances.
“We alluded to embarrassment, and it’s something that we quarrel each time we go out there,” Azinger said. “You never wish to do anything stupid, though when you’re personification great, those foolish things don’t cocktail in your head. And he’s got to out and substantially exorcise some of those demons. The initial small representation shot he’s got to hit, not chip shot, a initial small representation shot he’s got to strike will be micro-analyzed and he knows that. There’s a large microscope on that man … This is a tough initial place to start.”
If Woods plays good during Augusta, that is a bonus, though nobody should consider that is going to happen. If he plays poorly, it unequivocally means little. Why would anyone consider he’ll play well?
As Azinger suggested, there are no minor-league rehab starts for golfers, no place to contest during a reduce level, but all a fanfare. There is no gnawing of a fingers, no sorcery potions. Woods will need time, during slightest a few tournaments or more, before he can truly be assessed with fairness.
That won’t stop it from function anyway during Augusta where another step in this new peculiar tour will take place.