Golf: Woods gets back into swing of things

Tiger Woods tees off the 5th hole during the first round of the Farmers Insurance Open golf tournament at Torrey Pines Municipal Golf Course in La Jolla, California on Jan 26, 2017.
Tiger Woods tees off the 5th hole during the first round of the Farmers Insurance Open golf tournament at Torrey Pines Municipal Golf Course in La Jolla, California on Jan 26, 2017. PHOTO: REUTERS

MIAMI • Former world No. 1 Tiger Woods released a 24-second slow-motion video of himself on Saturday hitting an iron shot, another tease that he is returning to fitness.

The 41-year-old American tweeted the video of himself with the tag line: "Smooth iron shots."

It was an advancement from where the 14-time Major winner said he was two weeks ago in a posting on his website, revealing he was swatting 60-yard shots.

He has not played a competitive round since firing a 77 in the first round at Dubai in February. He withdrew from the event the next day and underwent another back operation in April, his fourth back surgery, that sidelined him for the remainder of the season.

He served as an assistant captain for the triumphant US squad at the Presidents Cup last week and said he had "no idea what my future holds" regarding his comeback.

Woods said doctors cleared him to begin swinging a golf club again two weeks ago.

"I'm still training, I'm getting stronger. But I don't have my golf muscles trained because I'm not doing anything golf related," he said at the Presidents Cup.

Last December, he returned from back surgery at the Hero World Challenge invitational event in the Bahamas that benefits his charity foundation.

In announcing the 18-man field for this year's event, two spots were left vacant for later invitations, opening the door that Woods could play in the event if his health is good and his game is worthy.

At the PGA Tour season opener in Napa, Tour rookie Tyler Duncan fired a one-under 71 on Saturday to keep a one-stroke, third-round lead in the Safeway Open .

His 54-hole total of 14-under 202 at the Silverado Resort and Spa kept him one shot in front of fellow American Chesson Hadley, who carded a two-under 70 for 203.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 09, 2017, with the headline 'Woods gets back into swing of things'. Print Edition | Subscribe