Golf: Woods still eyeing Nicklaus major mark

Vice-captain Tiger Woods looks on during the 2016 Ryder Cup in the US on Oct 1, 2016.
Vice-captain Tiger Woods looks on during the 2016 Ryder Cup in the US on Oct 1, 2016.PHOTO: AFP

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Tiger Woods says he still believes he can beat Jack Nicklaus' record of 18 major victories despite the injury layoff that has left him sidelined for more than a year.

The 40-year-old former world number one told PBS television's Charlie Rose programme that he had not given up hope of adding to his 14 major victories.

Woods gave an enigmatic response when first asked whether he felt he could reach Nicklaus's mark of 18 majors.

"To be honest with you, no," Woods replied.

But asked if he accepted that eventuality, he added: "I've accepted I'm going to get more."

When pressed later on whether he meant he still plans to break Nicklaus's mark, Woods responded: "Correct."

Woods has not won a major since his victory at the US Open in 2008, and has not played competitively since August 2015.

His much trumpeted comeback at the Safeway Open in northern California this month was shelved on the eve of the tournament, fuelling fresh fears about his fitness.

However, Woods said he is optimistic he can return in December, insisting that the competitive fires still raged within him.

"I like beating those guys. That's why I practice all those hours... is to be ready to take on those guys down the stretch. And do I miss it? Absolutely, 100 per cent.

"And to be at my age now, at 40 years old... I'm the first one to admit: I can't do the things I used to be able to do. Most people can't at my age, versus when they were younger. I have to find different ways to go about it."