Tiger Woods Masters prep includes first rounds at Augusta since 2015

Feb 25, 2018; Palm Beach Gardens, FL, USA; Tiger Woods watches his drive from the 3rd tee box during the final round of The Honda Classic golf tournament at PGA National (Champion). Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Tiger Woods Masters prep includes first rounds at Augusta since 2015

PGA Tour

Tiger Woods Masters prep includes first rounds at Augusta since 2015

Tiger Woods played two practice rounds at Augusta National last week in preparation for the 2018 Masters.

Those rounds at Augusta were Woods’ first since the final round of the 2015 Masters. He was joined by Bryson DeChambeau for nine holes each day according to a release posted on his website Friday afternoon.

Woods finished T-5 in his last start at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and said after the final round that he would have to see how his old yardage book was holding up after two years off. Woods also said he’d need to spend some time checking out the newly-renovated greens.

“They resurfaced a few of the greens, but they still look like they’ve been there for 100 years,” Woods said in the release. “The course was in fantastic shape. My yardage book was basically the same.”

The course was playing longer than usual with temperatures in the 30s and 40s and the greens and fairways not yet at tournament speed. Woods also said the Masters will provide a new challenge for him in contrast to the courses he saw throughout the Florida swing.

“I’ve played basically flat courses,” Woods said. “Hitting off slopes and walking was different. The only real flat spots at Augusta are the tee boxes. You have to make constant adjustments.”

Woods is now five starts into his latest comeback, during which he finished runner-up at the Valspar Championship and T-12 at the Honda Classic. He’s been getting a little sharper each week and finally seems to be pain free after a spinal fusion surgery last April.

“I’ve got a second chance on life,” Woods said. “I am a walking miracle.”

Now he’s ready to return to the Masters as the betting favorite after two years away from the tournament. Much has changed since he finished T-17 in his last Masters start in 2015, but his attitude entering the first major of the year remains the same.

“I’m just there to win,” Woods said.

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