Tiger Woods Lets Us Down

March 1st, 2017

Last weekend, Tiger Woods withdrew from yet another tournament, this time the Dubai Desert Classic, citing back spasms. For a man who once upon a time was expected to shatter every PGA record, this extended failure to launch is disappointing to say the least.

For golf fans of my generation, Tiger was it. He was exciting, he was electric, he was the best. He dominated golf for over a decade, and looked to be on a path to take the title of greatest golfer of all time from Jack Nicklaus.

Since the disasters of his personal life became public, his game has never been the same. Be it age, physical damage, or something else entirely, the Tiger Woods we grew up with is gone. He’s started this year being cut from his first tournament and withdrawing from his second, an identical beginning to what he did in 2015. In between, his schedule & results page doesn’t even have information for the 2015/16 season, due to lack of appearances.

In Dubai on February 2nd and 3rd, Tiger shot a(+5)77in the opening round before withdrawing during the second.

“I wasn’t in pain at all” Woods said after his birdie- less first round. “I was just trying to hit shots and I wasn’t doing a very good job. . . At the end, I finally hit some good ones but damage had already been done. On top of that, I could have hung in there, I could have shot something near even par if I would have made some putts, but I made nothing.”

Statements like this can be seen as either his acceptance of his new reality, or as a statement about his lack of confidence. For a man whose career should have been the most successful we’ve ever seen, a lack of confidence would be almost as disappointing as this growing list of withdrawals for uncertain reasons.

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