ORLANDO, Fla. – Tiger Woods still has until 5 p.m. ET Friday to officially commit to play next week’s Players Championship, but on Wednesday’s "Golf Central" Notah Begay painted a picture of continued uncertainty for the world No. 11.
“This is something that he’s going to battle with over the next few years. It’s just the ebbs and flows of dealing with the physical challenges in his back. I mean, how many surgeries he’s had and just try to recover the mobility,” Begay said. “More importantly trying to get enough days in a row where he’s feeling good and getting some reps in. If you’re not able to put the practice in you’re certainly not going to be able to show up at a place like TPC Sawgrass and have the requisite skills to go out and defend yourself on a golf course that exposes everybody.
“Things are starting to progress for him a little bit and hopefully we see him next week.”
Begay explained that Woods is currently dealing with the “ripple effect” of a busy finish to 2019 when he flew directly from hosting the Hero World Challenge in December to Australia to both play and captain the U.S. Presidents Cup team.
“Everything that goes into playing a PGA Tour schedule was sort of pushed back a little bit,” Begay said. “Not to make excuses, but it’s hard once you get past the age of 40 and you have a bad back; some days you just have some challenges getting into your normal routine.”
Woods isn’t currently on the commitment list for next week’s Players Championship, although he historically waits until the deadline to officially commit to events, and he hasn’t played since the Genesis Invitational in early February. He skipped the WGC-Mexico Championship, Honda Classic and this week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational, all events he’s played in the past.