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Jack Nicklaus: Breaking record will be 'big chore' if Tiger Woods doesn't win a major this year

May 26, 2010 |  1:46 pm

Nicklaus_400 Tiger Woods needs to win five more majors to break Jack Nicklaus' record of 18 major victories.

It's a tough enough task already -- and one that will be much, much tougher if Woods doesn't win at least one major this year.

So says no less an authority than Nicklaus himself.

Nicklaus told Sky Sports that the window of opportunity might close fast for the 35-year-old Woods, who missed significant playing time recently due to injuries and off-the-course issues.

"He did not win the Masters -- he came pretty close -- but I suspect he will win one or two of the next few if he is in shape to play," Nicklaus said. "If he does he will probably go ahead and break my record. If he doesn't win this year he has a tougher road to go.

"He will be 36 next year and time starts to go. He has to win five majors. Phil Mickelson won his fourth at the Masters, but prior to that three was the next closest [active] guy.

"So Tiger has to win almost two careers [of a 'regular' player] in the next five or six years to do that and that is a pretty big chore."

Before his next shot at climbing closer to Nicklaus' majors-victory record at the U.S. Open (June 17-20), Woods is scheduled to play in Nicklaus' Memorial Tournament next week.

-- Chuck Schilken

Photo: Tiger Woods, left, and Jack Nicklaus at the 2003 Presidents Cup. Credit: Ted S. Warren / Associated Press.