I’ve been saying for a couple of weeks now that Tiger is a pretty good tour player. That’s a bit of a left-handed complement, of course. There’s no question that at one point he was a historic best, but my judgement is that recently either he has slipped or the rest of the field has caught up (more likely). Given the level of competition, I’ve predicted on several occasions that he won’t win this year Nor will most of the players on Tour. There are 150 players on tour and only forty events.
A factoid from golf writer Doug Ferguson reveals a struggling player Here’s the scorecard for Tiger’s last 33 events: Three withdrawals, two missed cuts and—get this: twenty two finishes out of the Top Ten.
Yes, his injuries have a lot to do with that. But as in any sport, injuries are a part of the game. Guys who continue to win into their forties do so in no small part because they avoid injuries. Jack and Tom Watson did, but Fred Couples did not.
What intrigues me most about this latest withdrawal (from the WGC Cadillac) is that the injury is once again to the left leg—the same one that he played on while it was broken at the US Open, and on which he has had several surgeries. He missed four months last year after a knee and Achilles injury that he described at the time as “minor.”
He did manage, however, to walk out into the parking lot and drive off under his own power. He also said that he would have it examined early next week. That doesn’t speak to me of a critical injury. At the very least, though, I wonder how this will set him back in his practice.