Tiger Woods 'looking forward to great things' in 2018

NASSAU, BAHAMAS - DECEMBER 03: Tiger Woods of the United States walks off the 18th hole during the final round of the Hero World Challenge at Albany, Bahamas on December 3, 2017 in Nassau, Bahamas. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) Getty Images

Tiger Woods 'looking forward to great things' in 2018

PGA Tour

Tiger Woods 'looking forward to great things' in 2018

Tiger Woods is eagerly anticipating 2018 on and off the golf course.

“It’s been a year filled with ups and downs, but I am very optimistic about 2018 and looking forward to great things,” Woods posted on his website Friday. 

Woods, who turns 42 Saturday, said he found encouragement from his solid if not spectacular performance at the Hero World Challenge and hopes “it was the start of something big.”

It was his first competitive round of golf since February and came following another back surgery and a DUI arrest.

“I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect after being away from competitive golf for 10 months and came away excited about my health and my game,” he wrote. “The biggest surprise for me was finding out that I had the lead after 27 holes. I knew I was close after I eagled the ninth. It was nice to have played well enough to do that after being gone so long.”

Woods credited the fact that he played four straight days prior to the Hero, adding Rickie Fowler was “a deserving winner.”

Moving forward, Woods offered an optimistic outlook for 2018 – in spite of the face his swing has shortened.

“Now, I feel I’ve taken it to another level. I’ve started practicing again and was out with Justin the other day and had a good time. I’m continuing to progress and trying to get strong enough to where I can handle a workload again. I would love to play a full schedule in 2018. What that entails, including back-to-back events, I don’t know. I just have to continue to work on my body and game and see where I pan out. I wish I knew where I was going to play and when I was going to play – it’s a lot easier to prep for that – but we really don’t know. This is all unchartered territory … I was surprised at how explosive I was. And on top of that, how well I putted. I had been rolling it well at home, but it’s totally different when you have adrenalin in your system. I’m more than a full-club longer than when I shut it down. I wasn’t hitting it very far and was struggling to hit it solid. That’s a bad combo.”

He has also found a new love for the game he has played for four decades.

“I appreciate competitive golf now more than I ever have. During that 10-month period I was away from the game, I had a hard time walking and often needed assistance getting out of bed. To go from that and be able to play golf – I hadn’t played without pain for a long time – it was nice to just go out there and chill out, have fun with the guys and needle them. The next step was competition.”

Finally, Woods said he will be at the Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club in February – but was not certain if that would be as a participant or as a spectator.

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