A week after Rory McIlroy posted a video to get a point across, Tiger Woods appeared to do likewise in a bid to kill off rumours about his health.
The 14-time major winner used Twitter to air a clip showing him swinging a club apparently without any sign of discomfort. “Progressing nicely,” was the assessment delivered by Woods in an accompanying caption, which was clearly his response to claims made about the 40-year-old at the weekend as he recovers from his third back surgery in 19 months.
Robert Lusetich, a leading US-based golf writer, said he believed Woods’ condition had “worsened”, adding in a tweet that he “can’t move well” and found it “painful to sit”. Lusetich went on: “Sits in car with seat fully reclined. No forseeable return. Sad.”
That had already prompted Mark Steinberg, Tiger’s manager, to issue a strong denial, describing the tweets as “ridiculous and “absolutely false”, adding: “It’s reprehensible that every few months someone makes something up and it’s treated like a real story.”
Steinberg also said in his statement that he would have an “accurate update” on the former world No 1’s rehabilitation at the “appropriate time”, with the posting of the video - it showed the player hitting a 9-iron in a golf simulator - less than 24 hours later a clear attempt to get a message out that Woods is much healthier than was being claimed.
The unusual step by Woods, which was similar to how McIlroy responded to analyst Brandel Chamblee expressing fears about his gym regime, came after US Ryder Cup captain Davis Love had refused to write off Woods making his team for this year’s match as a player as opposed to having to settle for being a vice-captain at Hazeltine.
“If he can play 10 or 12 tournaments in a row, I think he can get his game back and make our team,” insisted Love. “If he keeps stopping and starting , it’s going to be tough for him, but he’s very determined.”
Woods’ position in golf for all that he’s slumped down the world rankings was illustrated by the fact his video had been retweeted almost 10,000 times within three hours of it being posted.
• See Tiger at work here.