Tiger Woods insisted he had suffered no ill effects following a bizarre incident which threatened to derail his thrilling charge into contention at the 83rd Masters.
For the second day running, Woods pulled off a superb recovery shot from the trees on the 14th hole at Augusta National, only for a security guard to run in to try to control the crowd, slip on the wet ground and slide knee-first into Woods’s right ankle.
Woods limped away grimacing in pain but there appeared to be no lasting damage and after holing from 15 feet for birdie, the 43-year-old also converted from twice the distance on the par-five 15th.
Further good chances went begging on the 17th and 18th but a 68 left Woods just one shot off the lead shared by Francesco Molinari, Jason Day, Brooks Koepka, Adam Scott and Louis Oosthuizen, all current or former major champions.
Ryder Cup Day 1
Woods, who is seeking a first major since 2008 and a first Masters title since 2005, told ESPN: “Accidents happen, we move on. Other than having four knee surgeries and four back surgeries I’m great.
“It’s all good. I’ve had galleries run over me (before). When you play in front of a lot of people things happen.”
Woods needed a nerve block simply to attend the Champions Dinner at Augusta National in 2017 and flew to London the same evening to consult a specialist about his ongoing back problems.
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He subsequently underwent spinal fusion surgery and returned to competition in November that year before playing a full season in 2018, culminating in his 80th PGA Tour in the Tour Championship in Atlanta.
Woods also finished sixth in the Open Championship at Carnoustie and runner-up in the US PGA at Bellerive and added: “The last major championships I have been right there in the mix.
“I had the lead at the British Open in the final round, had a shot at the PGA and here I am at the Masters.”