PGA Tour

Golf 'not desperate' to have Tiger back

2017-10-18 06:55
Tiger Woods (Getty)

Hong Kong - Golf no longer needs Tiger Woods to captivate global audiences because a new generation of young superstars has emerged in his absence, Olympic champion Justin Rose has said.

Woods' agent set the golfing world abuzz this week after revealing the 14-time major-winner had been cleared by his doctor to begin full practice as he prepares for yet another comeback from injury.

But Rose, who won the US Open in 2013 and came runner-up at this year's Masters, said the group of twenty-somethings now claiming golf's top prizes had already eclipsed Woods' absence.

"I think golf has found itself in a really healthy spot without Tiger at the moment," Rose, 37, said via teleconference, as it was announced he will contest next month's Hong Kong Open.

"So many young players have come through and filled the void. I think to have him back is just a bonus. I don't think golf is desperate for him back."

Woods, 41, has not won a tournament in four years, and his major drought stretches back to 2008. After undergoing spinal fusion surgery in April he said he may never play at the top level again.

But Woods, who has also been plagued by personal problems and pleaded guilty to driving under the influence in August, recently posted a video of himself using a driver, captioned "Making Progress".

"Everyone just wants to see a healthy Tiger Woods," said Rose. "It's almost gone past the point of thinking 'Oh we all really want to see Tiger win 18 majors'."

The Englishman added: "I think that we want him back, just because of what's he's meant to the sport for the last 20 years."

Besides Rose's loss to 37-year-old Sergio Garcia in a thrilling playoff at the Masters, this year's other men's majors were won by Americans Brooks Koepka, Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas, all in their early- or mid-twenties.

In a sport that traditionally favours comparatively older athletes, other heavyweights in the current world top 10 such as Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler and Jason Day are also yet to turn 30.

"It was definitely a year dominated by the young guys on tour," said Rose, who will join Garcia next month at Fanling for the Hong Kong Open.

Rose, a Hong Kong winner in 2015, said he was still disappointed to have missed out on Masters glory so narrowly to the Spaniard this year, but added that he was looking forward to the rematch.

"It was great to see him breakthrough and win his first Major - but unfortunately it was against me," he said.

"It'll be fun to have us both in the same field (in Hong Kong)... Sergio and I, we've joked all year long, had some fun with it all year long, so it will be a continuation of that."

Read more on:    tiger woods  |  justin rose  |  golf
NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights

Vote

Which is your favourite event on the golfing calendar?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

The 2017/18 PSL season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.