Tiger Woods is back. Fourteen years since his last victory at the Masters he secured his fifth Green Jacket and 15th career major on Sunday to move to within three of Jack Nicklaus’s all-time record of 18.
American golf icon Woods came into the event without a major win since 2011 and in 2017 he had fallen to 1,199 in the world rankings having suffered from injuries, undergoing back surgery and dealing with personal issues.
However, now once again a major champion, Woods’s return to top level golf has been described by many as one of “sport’s greatest ever comebacks”.
Starting the final round two shots behind third-round leader Francesco Molinari, Woods triumphed by one shot after hitting a two-under 70 to finish on -13 overall. Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson and Xander Schauffele were tied for second place on -12.
A previous Green Jacket winner in 1997, 2001, 2002 and 2005, 43-year-old Woods was presented with golf’s most famous garment by last year’s Masters champion Patrick Reed.
Speaking in The Butler Cabin at Augusta National, Woods said: “I was just trying to plot my way along the golf course all day and all of a sudden I had the lead and coming up 18 it was just trying to make a five.
“When I tapped the putt in I don’t know what I did. I know I screamed. To have my kids there, it’s come full circle – my dad was here in ’97 and now I’m the dad with two kids there.
“It’s overwhelming. I think it’s just because what has transpired. Last year I was just very lucky to be playing again. The previous Champions Dinner I was still struggling and missed a couple of years playing this great tournament – to now be the champion 22 years between wins is a long time but it is just unreal for me to experience this.
“My mom was here, she was here in ’97 as well, and so I just couldn’t be more happy and more excited.”