It would not have surprised anyone if Tiger Woods’ golf career came to an end in February of 2021. The 15-time major championship winner suffered serious injuries in a car accident and was considered lucky to be alive.
Suffice to say, the focus wasn’t on if and when he would play again. Yet Woods pulled off the improbable. He returned to the course at the 2022 Masters and ensured that he was not yet finished with competitive golf.
Woods made the cut at the Masters and did the same at the PGA Championship, his only two PGA Tour events to date this season. However, he faded down the stretch in both tournaments and was forced to withdraw from the PGA Championship due to discomfort in his injured leg.
That has led some to question just how long Woods may continue playing.
There are plenty of questions swirling around about the future of the 46-year-old golfer. The most pressing of the bunch is about just how much longer he will want to play. After all, he’s not the dominant golfer he once was; there are also questions about just how long his injured leg might hold up as he continues to age.
Still, it doesn’t seem like Woods is considering calling it quits any time soon.
When will Tiger Woods retire?
Woods was asked point-blank at The Open on Tuesday whether he was thinking about retiring any time soon. He laughed off the notion and denied that he was considering it eight times in a matter of seconds.
Who me? Retire?! No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. I’m not retiring.
Woods did acknowledge that he has taken a step back from the PGA Tour. He is no longer able to play a full schedule because of the injuries he has suffered over the years.
“That’s just my reality,” Woods said. “I don’t like it but I just have to accept it.”
🗣️ “Who me? Retire?! No!” 🤣
Tiger Woods tells Sky Sports he has no plans to retire at the moment but admits this may be his last chance to win an Open at St Andrews 🏴
But even despite that reduced schedule, Woods has no plans to retire. He wants to keep playing as long as he can even though there are questions about how long that may be.
Will Tiger Woods play at St. Andrews again?
This is the more pressing question about Woods’ future. Will he play again at St. Andrews, a golf course that is one of his all-time favorites, after the 2022 Open Championship?
Even he isn’t sure about the answer to that, as he explained on Tuesday.
This may be my last chance to — I’ll be playing at St. Andrews with a chance to compete at the highest level. If it comes around in, what, five, six, seven, eighth years’ time? Well, whatever the timeframe is, who knows if I will be playing the game of golf at this level. I don’t know. So I appreciate every single moment, especially coming back here.
It isn’t clear exactly when The Open will return to St. Andrews. Since 1990, The Old Course has hosted the major every five years. The only time it didn’t was the seven-year gap from 2015 to 2022; that was necessitated by the cancellation of the event in 2020 by the COVID-19 pandemic.
If The Open returns to its five-year scheduling cycle for St. Andrews, that means the tournament would return there in 2027. At that point, Woods would be 51; the oldest major winner in PGA Tour history is Phil Mickelson, who won the 2021 PGA Championship at 50 years, 11 months, 7 days.
Expecting Woods to compete in 2027 would be a stretch, especially considering his bad leg. That’s why he is hell-bent on giving himself a chance to compete for The Open title over the weekend at St. Andrews.
“I need to get myself into that position and make a try,” Woods said when asked about his goal of competing on the weekend at The Open. “As I said, I’m doing all my homework. I make sure I did all the things I needed to do to make sure that I put myself in there with a shot going into that back nine on Sunday. That’s my responsibility, and hopefully, I can do it.”