Watson lashed out at reporters previous year after shooting 6-over 78 in Round 2 to miss the cut at Augusta, one of seven missed cuts on the season.
"Seven months ago I did not believe it", Watson said. I'm excited to tune in to the Masters every spring and have even had the opportunity to walk the grounds a couple of times.
With Woods back in contention, NBC/Golf Channel said the final rounds of both the Arnold Palmer and Valspar championships registered the highest ratings for a PGA Tour telecast, outside of the majors, since the 2015 Wyndham Championship.
"I've been better with each week I've competed".
It's been nearly a decade since his highly publicized fall from grace, where the 14-time major champion admitted to years of multiple infidelities.
"I'm not that superstitious to try to do everything like I did a year ago", said Garcia."I think that at the end of the day, you control things in your head".
"Everyone's kind of chomping at the bit for him to kind of get here and see how he's moving and everything".
Thomas, Rose and top-ranked Dustin Johnson plus multiple major winners Rory McIlroy - seeking a career Grand Slam with a win - and Jordan Spieth all enter the Masters playing well. A hole later, Woods chipped in from behind No. 2 green for eagle, as roars echoed through the gallery.
Jason Day drives at Augusta. But I think everyone's kind of exclusively focused on Tiger and what he's going to do here and seeing if he can get to No 15.
"That's fine with us. Hopefully on the weekend I have a chance to fight and try to put on a (green) jacket".
Tiger is back, this year, and there's a buzz. With so many players winning tournaments and proving they have what it takes to compete in majors, he knows whoever slips on the green jacket Sunday will have earned it.
The 14-time major victor subsequently underwent spinal fusion surgery, his fourth back operation in the space of three years, but returned to action in December and is among the favourites for the first major of the season after finishing 12th, second and fifth in his last three starts on the PGA Tour. I think a lot of people quickly forgot what he had accomplished in his career after he got injured and was out for a while.
Just one year after unveiling its $65million press facility, Augusta National Golf Club this week proudly unveiled another massive upgrade - its new golf shop. Everyone wants instant gratification. "What Tiger does is he increases interest in the game. they get interested and think maybe this is a game for me", he added. And come Sunday, they'll have a member with two major championship trophies now on his mantle as Justin Thomas takes home his first green jacket. "We need him to play well", said the Black Knight himself, Gary Player. "We're all good enough to win out here".
Yet after undergoing spinal fusion surgery last April, the dark clouds hanging over Woods slowly began to lift.
"I'm going to be greedy for him and ask for your help". "He has the potential". His game is awesome.
Backers of Woods would justifiably argue he is still well ahead of schedule.
Two-time victor Bernhard Langer noted that Woods' return was just one of the week's great storylines.
"You have just got to have that self-belief". "That's fantastic leading up to the tournament".
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