Masters 2023: Tiger Woods turns up at Augusta National for private start to preparations
The 15-time major champion turned up at the practice range at the Georgia venue just after 3pm and hit balls for approximately 30 minutes.
Woods then headed to the first hole with his caddie, Joe LaCava, and only had a putter and wedge with him.
By that time, the patrons who’d attended the Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals earlier in the day had all left the areas where they’d been permitted.
Reporters, meanwhile, were unable to watch Woods as they are not permitted to set foot on the course after a certain time.
That had also been the case when Woods turned up on the Sunday afternoon 12 months ago to start his final preparations for a first major appearance since a car crash that left him with serious leg injuries.
In his only start in 2023, the former world No 1 finished just outside the top 40 in the Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles in February.
He decided not to play in any of the recent Florida Swing events on the PGA Tour and the odds of him pulling off another incredible win in the season’s opening major, as he did in 2019 following career-threatening back trouble, seem slim.
Woods defied the odds to make the cut in last year’s Masters bit then closed with a brace of 78s over the weekend as one of the toughest physical tests in golf took its toll.
The 47-year-old has said his intention is to play the majors, which includes an Open at Royal Liverpool, where he won The Open in 2006, this year and “a few more".
Woods is set to speak to the media on Tuesday, when defending champion Scottie Scheffler is also on the interview list along with career grand slam-chasing Rory McIlroy.
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