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Tiger Woods captivates Masters crowd as Sir Nick Faldo expresses worry over ‘hardest walk in golf’

The Masters has by no means seen a gap observe day fairly prefer it. The Augusta National welcomed again capability crowds for the primary time in three years – following the Covid limitations of 2020 and 2021 – and seemingly each patron in attendance needed a glimpse of Tiger Woods. 

Yet, as they lined up 10 deep to kind a human tunnel to the primary tee, after which proceeded to flank the fairways as if it have been Sunday afternoon, and as Woods smiled and laughed in the company of hombres Justin Thomas and Freddie Couples, in the background Sir Nick Faldo was issuing a foreboding message. As a lot as the Englishman would like to see Woods tee it up in Thursday’s first spherical – “if he plays, it will be one of the greatest moments at the Masters” – Faldo warned that it may show past the 46-year-old. 

Storms are forecast for Tuesday and Wednesday and Faldo is anxious that this might deny Woods the health checks he requires on the best leg that suffered catastrophic accidents 14 months in the past and which had stored him out of competitors since.

“Basically, I think he’s going to go right up until Thursday morning to decide whether he’s going to play,” Faldo, the three-time Masters champion, stated. “And I worry that the leg’s stamina is the No 1 situation and, if it’s going to rain, then I don’t suppose he’s going to get a real probability to check the stamina of the leg. So I’m not going to say no, however I might have thought he’s leaning that he wouldn’t play. 

“Hey, the man’s a superstar and he’s got ridiculous mental strength and if it’s just pain, then he’ll play. But if it’s real stamina, or fatigue, that affects your golf, then maybe he won’t. That’s just my take.” 

Faldo will not be alone in questioning why Woods didn’t bear a extra strenuous trial exercise when he travelled right here together with his son Charlie to play a observe spherical. “So he got here in final week which I believed was fascinating, which made sense and I believed that testing the leg was not about his golf swing – the swing is nice – it’s stamina and whether or not his foot, his legs will survive the walk. 

“This is the toughest walk on tour… there are a lot of undulations. It’s difficult walking. Take down the hill at the sixth – it’s steep. So if it was me and you were testing your leg’s stamina, you obviously have to walk 18 [on the Tuesday], you’ve then got to recover and then go again [on the Wednesday]. Then you could assess how you feel and say ‘yeah, I could go 72 holes’. But he didn’t do two days, two rounds. He came in for a quick one round, disappeared, and then came back here on Sunday for nine holes.” 

It is broadly accepted that Woods will play provided that he believes he can win and won’t merely undergo the motions for ceremony or the advantage of his followers. On Sunday, Cam Davies, the younger American, performed a couple of holes with Woods and seen that he was “a little slow going up a couple of hills on 17 and 18”. 

Yet Davies added: “Tiger’s hitting it far enough to play the holes the way you need to play them. I don’t see any reason why he wouldn’t be able to put rounds together out here.” 

Woods is because of give a press convention at 11am US time on Tuesday and maybe he’ll present the answer everybody needs. Or possibly he won’t be able to ship the decision, as an alternative sticking to the assertion he issued on Sunday that “this will be a game-time decision”.

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