US Masters: Tiger ready to pounce at Augusta?
Whatever he does for the rest of his life, it’s fair to say that Tiger Woods will be considered one of the greatest golfers of all time, but the past few years have been turbulent. However, in the past six months, he seems to have turned a corner.
Woods has played in five events in 2013, winning three of them. Even by his high standards, that record is impressive – and the timing of his upturn in fortunes could be especially significant given that the US Masters starts this week.
Odds of 4/1 for Woods to be victorious in the year’s first major at Augusta might seem short, but many of his big rivals such as Rory McIlroy and Luke Donald are struggling to find form. And for large parts of the year so far, Woods has seemed nigh-on unstoppable.
His three victories in 2013 have come in the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the WGC Cadillac Championship and the Farmers Insurance Open, with the first two being among the biggest events on the PGA Tour calendar. At the Cadillac, he pocketed a cool $1.5m (around £900,000)!
A successful start to the year has helped Woods to overhaul McIlroy to become world number one for the first time in around three years. That will seriously boost his confidence, as well as send a message out to his opponents.
As for the US Masters, he might be the favourite to win, but, as always, he will face some very stiff competition. Also, it’s been just over five years since he won his last major title, and he won’t feel like he’s back to his best until he’s taken one of the four biggest titles in golf.
If he is to win, Woods will have to overcome a huge psychological barrier as his recent tournament victories are, in stature, pretty small compared to the first major of the year.
Fortunately for him, Woods has won the US Masters four times and knows what it takes to win at Augusta.
Should he don the famous Green Jacket for the fifth time in his career, it will mark a complete turnaround in his fortunes on the course. It could also herald another era of dominance where Woods may leave his big rivals trailing in his wake once again.