Tiger takes time for fans at the Masters

Tiger Woods updated his monthly newsletter from the Masters today. At the end, he said he’d check back in after the Masters. Think it will be after he’s fitted for his fifth green jacket? He’s certainly confident it could happen.
Here’s the newsletter:

April 7, 2009

By Tiger Woods

Hello from Augusta, Georgia, where I’m preparing for the Masters Tournament. I arrived Sunday and played 18 holes, and the course is in perfect condition. I practiced Monday and will likely play Tuesday, depending on the weather. I’ll practice but likely won’t play on Wednesday, then go home early to rest for the first round. I started this routine at majors in 2006 at Royal Liverpool and it’s worked out pretty well.

Obviously, there is a lot of excitement for the first major tournament of the year. I feel good about my game and had good practice sessions with Hank Haney. I didn’t work on anything specific; just did a lot of fine-tuning.

The main reason for that is we never know how the course is playing until we get there. As we all know, it usually changes from Thursday through Sunday – it’s just part of the experience. From year-to-year, we don’t know what’s going to happen. The last two years, the weather has been challenging. Hopefully, it will be better this week.

I’m bringing a 2-iron and a 5-wood, and won’t decide which one to carry until after I play my practice rounds. A lot will depend on how the fourth hole is set up.

I don’t really have a favorite hole at Augusta National. I like all 18. They’re so different from each other.

I will likely skip the Par-3 Tournament on Wednesday. I played in it about every year until 2005. You play a practice round in the morning, then sit around for your tee time. It just becomes a long day and takes away from your main preparation. I’m sure there will be a day when I come back and play, especially when Sam and Charlie get a little older and can caddie for me.

Charlie has touched a club, but he can’t hold one yet. Sam didn’t grab a club until she was able to crawl. She’s still not swinging a club; she’d rather throw the ball.

It’s nice to have a little momentum going into the Masters. The win at Bay Hill validated all the hard work Hank and I put in after my knee surgery. Honestly, it felt just the same as all my other wins. The only difference was I didn’t have any pain in my left knee.

A year ago at this time, I was just hoping to get through the Masters. There’s really no comparison; it’s stable. Last year, I had no ACL and my cartilage was damaged. I had surgery the following week. This year, the knee feels strong and I can drive into my left leg.

I’ve been asked how I feel about being ranked No. 1 in the world. Obviously, you take pride in your performance. If you play well, the ranking will take care of itself. It shows you’ve been consistent and haven’t had a lot of bad weeks.

That’s all for now. Have a happy Easter and I’ll check back after the Masters.


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About Jill Painter

Jill Painter is a sports columnist for the Los Angeles News Group, covering everything from the Dodgers, Lakers, Clippers, USC, UCLA, Kings, golf and all human interest stories in sports.