Tiger Woods is waking up “pain free” for the
first time in three years, ahead of his return to
golf at next week’s Hero World Challenge, his
fellow former world number one Jason Day
said on Wednesday.

Woods, who has not played competitive golf
for 10 months as he recovers from a fourth
operation on his back in three years, will be
making his comeback next week at his own
tournament in Albany, Bahamas.

“I did talk to him and he did say it’s the best
he’s ever felt in three years, he doesn’t wake
up with pain anymore, which is great,” Day
said on Wednesday ahead of the Australian

“I totally understand where he’s coming from
because sometimes I wake up and it takes me
about 10 minutes to get out of bed.
For him to be in pain for three years is very

The winner of five tournaments in 2013, 41-
year-old Woods has played just 19 events

The 14-times major champion made a previous
comeback at the Hero World Challenge last
year after nearly 16 months on the sidelines,
finishing 15th in a final field of 17.
He showed flashes of brilliance, but struggled
with accuracy.

Woods returned to the PGA Tour in January
but missed the cut at the Farmers Insurance
Open before shooting an opening-round 77 a
week later at the European Tour’s Dubai
Desert Classic and withdrawing.

In April, he said he had undergone a fourth
operation on his back in three years.
Australian Day, now world number 12 after a
lean spell of his own with no wins this year,
said the Hero World Challenge was the perfect
tournament for Woods to make his return.

“With regards to him playing next week,
there’s no pressure,” Day added.
“It’s an 18-man field, there’s no cut … it’s
obviously a tournament that suits him, that he

“He says he’s ready and I‘m hoping he is.
From what he says, he’s been hitting it long
and if he is hitting it long and straight, it’s
going to be tough for us.”


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