Tiger Woods admits he never could have expected he would have to wait at least 11 years for his next major title after the 2008 U.S. Open.
Woods has won 14 majors in his career but is looking to end the long wait for number 15 at the Masters this week.
The 43-year-old has at least rediscovered some form – winning the Tour Championship late last year – and hopes to be in the mix come Sunday at Augusta.
“I would not have foreseen that, for sure,” he told a news conference on Tuesday. “After I won my 14th, I felt like I still had plenty of more major championships that I could win.
“Unfortunately, I just didn’t do it. I put myself there with chances on the back nine with various places, I just haven’t won. Hopefully I put myself there again.”
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) April 9, 2019
Woods was boosted by his win at the Tour Championship, though, and believes that victory showed he can return to the top.
“It proved to me that I could win again,” Woods added. “I was close at times, I was close at Tampa [The Valspar Championship], I was close at The Open Championship, had the lead there, I was making a run at Brooksie [Koepka] at the PGA [Championship].
“I just needed to clean up my rounds, maybe get a break here or there. I was finally hitting it again.”
Woods has had his moments since his last major triumph, winning six tournaments in 2009 and another five in 2013.
But after a tough couple of years with injuries, victory – and a consistent performance – in September last year was a big deal.
“I look back upon that week as not only how it culminated with everything on 18, but how I led from day one and that’s not easy to do,” Woods said.
“And from the struggles I’ve had the last few years, to go out and take the lead on the first day and then end up winning the tournament, leading wire to wire, that made that much more special.”