On the eve of his first competitive round since August, Tiger Woods said that he believes he will regain the form that helped him win 14 majors and 71 Tour events.
Woods spoke at a press conference Wednesday at the Frys.com Open, his first event since missing the cut at the PGA Championship. Woods added the Northern California event to his schedule after he failed to qualify for the season-ending FedEx Cup playoffs.
When asked about Greg Norman's comments to Golf Magazine that Tiger would not win another major, Woods appeared to stiffen and then glare at his inquisitor.
"I've heard those questions before," Woods said. "I've kept on winning them, too."
Earlier this week Woods fell out of the top 50 in the Official World Golf Rankings for the first time since 1996. He said the reason for his poor play this year was his injuries, which have prevented him from playing more events and until recently limited his practice time.
"I was limited to a ball count," Woods said. "I was limited to how many holes I could play, how long I could be standing on my leg. All that was limiting. That was all taken off right before the Bridgestone, but still, that's not how I'd like to prepare. This is different. I've had a chance to prepare, and then obviously after this event I've got a few more weeks before I play in the Aussie Open. So that's more how I'd like to prepare and practice and play in events. So I'm getting back to my normal routine."
Woods said he felt that his swing was strong and explosive. He confirmed the report that he shot 62 at Medalist Golf Club near his home in Jupiter, Fla., last weekend, and he said that setting the course record was a boost to his confidence.
"I hadn't posted a low round in a long time," Woods said. "So that's something that it felt good to do, and to be honest with you, it was pretty easy and I left a few out there."
Tiger also offered a few details on why he selected Joe LaCava as his new caddie.
"I liked his personality on how he was with his players, how he would step in when need be, and he also knew how to encourage and he knew when to step out," Woods said. "But each player is different, you know. [Fred Couples is] very different from Davis [Love III], and obviously Dustin [Johnson] is a little bit different than both of them, and he's been successful with all of them." For complete coverage on Tiger's press conference, check out Mike Walker's blog. (Photo: Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP)