The 15-time major champion's struggles were laid bare as the weather turned over Augusta National. So is it time to accept it's over? Alex Perry and Matt Chivers have their say
Tiger Woods has withdrawn from the Masters for the first time in his career.
After braving the conditions to make the cut at Augusta National for a record-equaling 23rd time, Woods fell to last place on the leaderboard as the rain came down.
Since withdrawing, Woods revealed re-aggravating his plantar fasciitis was the reason for scratching his name from the tee sheet.
Footage emerged on social media of the 15-time major champion limping on one hole, which brought questions if a withdrawal was on the cards.
This is the second time that Woods has withdrawn in his last five starts, with a best finish of 45th coming at Riviera.
Prior to the Masters, Woods asserted his intentions to focus on each major championship in 2023. The PGA Championship at Oak Hill is up next in May, followed by the US Open and the Open.
But it seems that Woods can’t shake off the niggling aches and pains in his leg that stem from his car accident in February 2021.
Should Tiger Woods call it a day?
Will we see Woods play again in 2023, or will the state of his physical health prove too much to ignore? Two of our writers have their say…
Tiger Woods will be back – and who would be against him making it 24?
Let’s start by clearing up that Tiger Woods pulling out of this Masters was absolutely the right decision, writes Alex Perry.
The footage was painful just to watch, so you can only imagine how it is for him to deal with.
But Woods is a fierce competitor. He’s already hinted that he wants to get on the Champions Tour and tear up the record books there, but he can’t do that until the 2026 season. You think he’s just going to sit around twiddling his thumbs until then?
On Friday, he scraped into the third round on the number. It meant he equalled the record of 23 straight cuts made at the Masters.
“I’ve always loved this golf course, I love playing this event, I always wanted to play here,” he said.
Will he be here next year to try and make it 24? You try and stop him.
Quitting isn’t in his nature.
Is this the Tiger we want to see?
As much as I love the sub-plot of players making the cut at major championships, I don’t want this to be the sole aim for Tiger Woods with his limited appearances on tour, writes Matt Chivers.
Of course, writing him off has made us look foolish in the past, but his miraculous win in 2019 at Augusta feels longer ago with every shot we watch the great man hit.
Perhaps the awful weather has driven him to pull out. The other three majors could offer more favourable conditions, and he likely doesn’t want to say goodbye just yet.
I’ve never seen an athlete with more self-belief, but surely Woods will soon grow tired of just surviving and not thriving when he tees it up.