Tiger Woods lowered his standard of success on the eve of the PGA Championship even as he got the high road Wednesday in a spiteful split with his longtime caddie.
Woods said not long ago that it could not be a great year without winning a major. Currently he would believe the year a victory for the reason he no longer hurts.
He is thinking just about winning when the PGA Championship gets under way in the stifling heat at Atlanta Athletic Club.
Asked for a practical hope in the last major – just his third time teeing it up since April with a winless dearth currently extending to 21 months – Woods said a “W”.
He added, “Do you want me to elaborate? A nice W”
However, victory is calculated in a different way these days due to injuries to his left knee and Achilles tendon that have made it difficult to walk, play and practice in so far as he would desire. He is capable now to strike balls as long as he wants after his rounds. No need to place ice on his leg. For him, this is a victory for his own self.
He said, “In order to win, I had to be healthy. That’s what we’re trying to get to. Now I can go. Now I can do the work. I can do the practice sessions, and I think that’s the only way that my game will get to where I need to get to.”
Woods remains the central figure at the PGA Championship. If it is not the longest drought of his profession, or a bum leg that kept him out of the final two majors, the latest soap opera involves his ex-caddie.
Steve Williams is now working for Adam Scott and took a dig at Woods on Sunday when his new manager won a World Golf Championship at Firestone. Williams, on the bag for 13 of Woods’ majors, named it the “best win” of his profession.
Woods said, “I was happy to see Stevie and Adam win,” adding that he sent Williams a “nice text” after the round.
He seemed more calmed down facing the biggest audience of the week in the media center. He was glib, only it came off as funny rather than patronizing. He went into depth with some of his replies. That as well might have been connected to the state of his leg.
He said, “I was frustrated early in the year because … I just wasn’t feeling well. And it’s been frustrating. But now that I’m healthy, it’s so much easier to be patient because I feel good. I have way more energy because I’m not trying to block out pain. I can just go out there and play golf.”