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This Tiger Woods comeback is different from the others

October 5, 2011 |  2:35 pm


The latest Tiger Woods comeback got off to a good start Wednesday.

First, Woods announced that he had signed an endorsement deal with Rolex. Second, he said he felt strong after finishing a pro-am leading up to this week’s Open at CordeValle in Northern California.

“I’m able to walk the golf course,” he said. “This is a golf course I [previously] would have a very difficult time walking.”

Health alone makes this comeback different from others that have fallen flat, Woods told reporters during an afternoon news conference. He is scheduled to tee off in Thursday’s first round with Louis Oosthuizen and UCLA star Patrick Cantlay.

“I’ve got my strength back, the explosiveness in that leg,” he said. “That’s from having time to heal and train.”

Failing to qualify for the FedEx Cup playoffs meant extra days at home, playing 36 or more holes a day, looking to regain the sharpness that had faded with an inconsistent, injury-plagued schedule in recent years.

It also gave him time to continue working on major swing changes with coach Sean Foley. Woods seemed upbeat just days after falling out of the top 50 in the world rankings for the first time in more than a decade.

“I’ve done the legwork,” he said. “Now it’s time to go play.”


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Photo: Tiger Woods tees off during the Open pro-am on Wednesday. Credit: Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press