Former world No. 1 Tiger Woods will skip the 2015 Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill, a tournament he has won eight times in his career. In an announcement via his official website, Woods stated that while he hopes to play in The Masters, he is still working to ensure he can compete with the best players in the world.
I’ve put in a lot of time and work on my game and I’m making strides, but like I’ve said, I won’t return to the PGA TOUR until my game is tournament ready and I can compete at the highest level.
The 39-year-old last teed it up before withdrawing due to back issues at the 2015 Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, another venue where he’s had substantial success. He won there eight times as a professional, including the 2008 U.S. open.
The fact that he’s not playing at Bay Hill coupled with the disappointment in San Diego tell a dark tale about the state of Woods’ game. He’s as far from the form that made him one of the game’s great legends, and now questions of whether he can regain that magic are as valid as ever.
The bottom line is Tiger isn’t playing in events he’s won with relative ease. They’re the kind of tournaments one plays in when trying to feel like a winner. If his game isn’t ready for those starts, then it’s difficult to envision success in golf’s most difficult tests in the majors.
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