A few months ago, while playing at Augusta National, Tiger Woods hit an awkward shot along the 17th Fairway. It was the last time he played this season. Little after the incident there was a report in his website stating the Woods had suffered a minor injury and had irritated his left knee and his left Achilles tendon. It didn’t seem like that much of a deal at that point, but sure enough, it was just the kind of news that some fans were waiting for. This injury was some sort of omen. Since the incident with the driving his SUV into a tree back in 2009, Tiger Woods hasn’t been the player, the star, that many of us fall for.
We knew his personal life was a mess once and the guy who apparently had it all and always kept his cool no matter the circumstances was falling apart. In a matter of months he was facing a multimillion dollar divorce, losing the custody of his children, losing millions in advertisements and endorsements, losing the top spot in the PGA Tour and quite frankly, for a moment there it seemed as if he was losing his game as well.
Woods announced Tuesday he will skip this month’s British Open. To be quite honest here, this decision is of little surprise to anyone in golf. He hasn’t played since he withdrew during the first round of the Players Championship in early May. What is hard to believe is that for the first time in a while he is sitting out two major championships. The thing here is that he always used to define his year and his career based on his performance on these tournaments. And if we look at it from a straightforward point of view, he might as well just give up coming back this year.
On his website, Tiger Woods gave out the following statement: “I do not want to risk further injury. That’s different for me, but I’m being smarter this time. I’m very disappointed and want to express my regrets to the British Open fans.” It seems that it is time to give up on certain things, certain goals. For instance, there is the chase to break Jack Nicklaus’ record 18 major championships. It just goes without saying that its further and further away. Woods is stuck on 14, with three lengthy stretches away from the game (one personal, two injuries).
Tiger Woods is going to be 36 in December and the clock is ticking on the likelihood he can regain the momentum to win five more majors and accomplish what once seemed inevitable. Woods has won 71 official PGA Tour events including 14 majors. He is 14-1 when going into the final round of a major with at least a share of the lead. He has been heralded as “the greatest closer in history” by multiple golf experts. He owns the lowest career scoring average and the most career earnings of any player in PGA Tour history.
He has spent the most consecutive and cumulative weeks atop the world rankings. He is one of five players (along with Gene Sarazen, Ben Hogan, Gary Player, and Jack Nicklaus) to have won all four professional major championships in his career, known as the Career Grand Slam, and was the youngest to do so.