Golf Golf

Tiger to play at PGA National


MIAMI, Florida, February 15 – Tiger Woods, trying to win his first US PGA title since September 2009, will play the Honda Classic for the first time since his amateur days and compete in the next two World Golf Championships events.

The 14-time major champion, who is chasing the all-time record of 18 major crowns won by Jack Nicklaus, announced on Tuesday on his website his upcoming schedule, which includes an unusual start at PGA National between WGC events.

Woods has not won a tour-level event since the Australian Masters in November of 2009 just before the infamous sex scandal that led to divorce from Elin Nordegren and prompted a move from Orlando to the Miami area.

The move puts Woods near the course of the Honda Classic on March 1-4, making it the perfect fit between his usual stops at the WGC Match-Play Championship next week and the WGC Cadillac Championship, to be played on March 8-11.

“I’ve heard great things about the Honda Classic and now that I live here I want to play whenever possible,” Woods said.

Woods shared third last month at Abu Dhabi in his 2012 season opener and shared 15th last week at the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am in his US season debut, falling out of contention with a 75 in the final round.

“I’m excited about my start and look forward to keep building,” Woods said. “I’ve made great strides from last year and hopefully all my hard work will pay off with a victory soon.”

Woods won the World Challenge last December, a limited-field invitational event that serves as a fundraiser for his foundation but also offers world ranking points.

Former world number one Woods, now ranked 18th, is a three-time winner at the WGC World Match-Play, having taken the title in 2003, 2004 and 2008, and has won eight times at Doral, site of the other WGC event. His most recent triumph there was in 2007.

Woods has not played the Honda Classic since 1993, when he missed the cut as a 17-year-old amateur when the event was played at Weston Hills.