next week, The 122second abbreviation US Open Golf Championship It takes place at Brookline Country Club in Massachusetts, and while Tiger Woods is on the list, it remains unclear if the three-time winner will actually attend, especially after his leg injuries led to a premature termination of an earlier outing at the PGA Championship in May.
But the question shouldn’t be whether Woods should risk playing the US Open – it’s whether he should play again.
It’s now been nearly 16 months since then Woods was involved in a single car accident in Rancho Palos, California.an accident that resulted in injuries, so the dangerous surgeons considered amputating his right leg.
Remarkably, though Woods returned to playing for the Masters in April, and while he was crossing the middle of the roadhis two-set weekend tour of the ’80s was the worst in more than 25 years of playing the tournament he’s won five times.
Then, at the PGA Championship in Southern Hills in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Woods slalom and worked out his worst career result in the event, forcing him to withdraw, the only time he’s done so in a major since he was Howe is 19 years old playing in the 1995 US Open, when he withdrew due to a wrist injury..
But this look of discomfort, even a hint of embarrassment, as he tried to complete that third round in Southern Hills was as obvious as it was annoying. Gone is the strength of the brand that has seen him win 15 majors, second only to Jack Nicklaus. His fine touch on the greens would usually have deserted him and even bending over to pick up the ball from the hole seemed like agony.
It’s not just Tiger Woods that anyone wants to see.
While his struggle to return to play was considered heroic by many, there was nothing noble or brave in him.
If anything, it brought to mind those past few years of the late Seif Ballesteros’ career when the Spanish golf legend and five-time winner didn’t seem to know where the ball would go or even Muhammad Ali in those last painful battles against Larry Holmes in 1980 and Trevor Berbick in 1981; Nobody enjoys it, not Saif, not Ali and certainly not Woods.
This is, after all, a golfer and winning is everything to him.
Even before the Masters and PGA Championships, where he won four times, Woods was still publicly saying there was no point in competing unless he believed he could win. While you might expect him to say that – he’s won 110 times in his professional career – his injury-affected performances suggest he was a shadow of the player he once was.
Former European Ryder Cup captain and television analyst Paul McGinley watched Tiger toil in Southern Hills and noted that Woods’ pride was “to the point of not wanting to go back and just be a celebratory golfer” showing up and never challenging the leaders.
This is a very real danger.
Yes, talking about words is one thing but marching – literally – quite another for Woods.
will you get better Sure, it would get stronger over time but there were already a lot of miles on the clock. Now 46, his body had already endured so much before the crash, Including five surgeries dating back a decade And a lot of surgeries done on his knees, the first of which was in 1994. Time always caught up with him.
So he has to take leave next week. Or take a month off?
The tournament probably wouldn’t be the same without Woods and TV ratings would falter but no one would blame him, not for everything he did in-game and in the game.
And if he calls for time in his career, he won’t want to do things — or money. Look at Tom Brady. He reportedly just signed a 10-year $375 million deal to be the NFL’s leading Fox Sports team analyst. Imagine the insight that the greatest golfer of the century can bring to the PGA Tour – especially when your closest competitor is Nick Faldo.
Besides, there is a perfect ending waiting to be had.
In July, this year’s final major tournament, the British Open, will be held at the spiritual home of golf, St Andrews. It is, by Woods’ own admission, his favorite golf course in the world and A place he has won twice before, in 2000 and 2005.
One summer’s day in Scotland, galleries line up by the thousands at Old Course’s 18The tenth Fairway and Woods stopped for one last photo over the legendary Swilken Bridge, Just as Jack Nicklaus, his only contender for the GOAT golf title, did in 2005.
As the endings go on, the more appropriate tribute will be.