While Tiger Woods has not yet set a timetable for his return to competition, Golf Channel sources indicate that fans could see the world No. 1 back in action in July.
Woods informed the public on April 1 that he had undergone successful surgery to alleviate a pinched nerve that had been plaguing him for months, and as a result the 38-year-old missed the Masters for the first time in his professional career. Sources tell Golf Channel that Woods is targeting a return at the Open Championship, which will be held July 17-20 at Royal Liverpool.
Woods was forced to withdraw during the final round of the Honda Classic last month because of a bad back, and has not teed it up since a tie for 25th at the WGC-Cadillac Championship in March. Earlier this week, Woods' agent, Mark Steinberg, told ESPN.com that Woods experienced "zero" setbacks following microdiscectomy surgery and had resumed "light" chipping and putting.
Following the surgery, Woods said via statement that he hoped to return "sometime this summer," a sentiment that Steinberg echoed this week.
"I don’t know when he intends to be playing competitively. But I expect it to be this summer," Steinberg told ESPN.com. "I know that’s a wide range, but as the weeks go by we’ll be able to pinpoint an approximate time. It’s still a little early for that.”
Golf Channel reached out to Steinberg for reaction. He said "Absolutely no target date has been set," but that Woods does intend to be back at some point this summer.
Woods won the Open Championship the last time it was held at Royal Liverpool in 2006, defeating Chris DiMarco by two shots. It was the third - and most recent - time he lifted the claret jug.