Tiger Woods had tears in his eyes at The Open while fans at St Andrews gave him a rapturous ovation as he walked down the fairway on the 18th hole. Woods has publicly admitted there are doubts over whether he will still be blessing the sport of golf when The Open returns to the iconic course in 2030.
The 15-time major winner will miss the cut for the weekend after finishing on 36 holes, potentially making Friday’s round his final bow in The Open at St Andrews. After nearly losing a leg in a car crash in February 2021, Woods is still physically affected and has admitted his long-term injuries could cut his illustrious career short.
On Friday, as he approached the green on the 18th, those in attendance gave him an overwhelming standing ovation, paying their respects to a sporting legend. Woods was visibly touched by the gesture, wiping away tears as he held his cap in the air and bid thanks for the support.
Despite potentially saying goodbye to St Andrews, Woods seemingly plans to return to Open action and continue his competitive golf career for some time yet. Next year, The Open takes place at Hoylake, where the 46-year-old has previously lifted the Claret Jug.
After his emotional send-off, Woods admitted that he didn’t know whether he would be able to play when The Open returns to St Andrews in eight years. He explained that he now understands how Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer felt in the past.
“It was very emotional for me,” Woods told Sky Sports. “I’ve been coming here since 1995, and the next one comes around in 2030, but I don’t know if I will be physically able to play, so this felt to me like it will be the last time to play at St Andrews.
“I came to understand what Jack [Nicklaus] and Arnold [Palmer] felt in the past, and I felt that way. They understand what golf is all about and what it takes to be an Open champion. I have been lucky enough to win here twice – it felt emotional because I don’t know whether I will be able to play when it comes back here.”
He added: “My two days’ play – I made my share of mistakes. I struggled again to get the feel of the greens, same as yesterday. I had hit a couple of poor shots and just never got anything going. I needed to shoot a low one today, and I didn’t do that.”