A month after withdrawing during the final round of the 2010 Players Championship on the seventh hole due to neck spasms, Tiger Woods said that leading up to the Memorial Tournament his neck feels “pretty good.”
“Actually, my neck feels pretty good. It’s still not where I want it to be. It’s a little sore. The range of motion is pretty good,” Woods said.
Woods has focused on his rehab process during his weeks away from the golf course, and said that he is “able to recover for the next day, which I wasn’t able to do before this. That’s a good sign.”
Woods stated that he believes he can make it through the four rounds of the Memorial beginning on Thursday.
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Woods will enter the Memorial Tournament without the aid of a swing coach, as Hank Haney resigned from his post shortly after the conclusion of the Players Championship back in May.
Woods had been with Haney for several years, winning multiple major championship titles with him as instructor. Woods said that he has been intently studying video of his swing by himself and has become his own instructor for the time being.
“That’s the great thing about technology,” Woods said during his press conference at the Memorial Tournament. “We can use video. That’s what I’ve been doing and been working on it that way.”
Woods said that Haney helped him hit the ball more consistently than he had before, and stated that he has won a minimum of five tournaments every year since Haney began working with him. Woods made note of the fact that since trying to hit the ball further, his fairway hit have gone down.
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“If I bring out my old driver, I’d hit it a lot straighter than I do now because it goes shorter,” Woods said. “I’ve gained the ability to hit the ball probably 20, 30 yards further than I did then, but then also that brings in more trouble. The game has changed so much now that you just have to hit the ball out there.”
Following the Memorial Tournament, Woods will enter a critical stretch in his 2010 campaign, as the next two major venues will be held at sites where the top-ranked golfer has triumphed. The United States Open will be contested on Pebble Beach while the British Open will be held at St. Andrews.
Woods won the 2000 U.S Open at Pebble Beach by a record 15-shot margin. He also collected the 2000 British Open at St.Andrews by eight shots and repeated his title at the course in 2005.
With his neck injury still to be determined as to how it may affect his playing at the Memorial Tournament, Woods remains the co-betting favorite on Online Sportsbooks along with No.2 ranked player Phil Mickelson to win the 2010 United States Open.