Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods speaks to the media ahead of the 88th edition of The Masters Image Credit: Masters Tournament

Five-time Masters champion Tiger Woods believes he still has what it takes to win a sixth Green Jacket at Augusta National despite being hampered with injury problems in recent years.

The former World No.1, who has never missed the cut at the first Major Championship of the year, is making just his third competitive start this week since last year’s Masters Tournament, with the 48-year-old missing the majority of the 2023 season following surgery on his right ankle.

That was the latest in a long list of injury problems for Woods, who suffered career-threatening leg and ankle injuries in a car crash in February 2021, just two years after miraculously winning a fifth Masters title after making a comeback from spinal fusion surgery.

Despite now playing a severely limited schedule, which has only seen him start the Genesis Invitational in 2024, where he withdrew during the second round, the 15-time Major champion insists he can still equal Jack Nicklaus’ record of six Masters victories.

"If everything comes together, I think I can get one more [Major]," Woods said in his pre-tournament press conference.

"I still think they [things coming together to win] can. I don't know when that day is, when that day comes, but I still think that I can. I haven't got to that point where I don't think I can't."

While many a player would have called it quits on their career a long time ago following the injury problems Woods has suffered, that’s not currently at the forefront of his mind, and won’t be for the foreseeable future given Woods’ burning desire to compete with the game’s elite.

The hunger to lift one of the game’s four biggest trophies is arguably greater than ever, with Woods stating that he keeps coming back for more due to his unconditional love for the game.

“I love golf, I do,” he said.

“I've always loved it. I played other sports growing up, but I just have always loved this sport. I love to compete.

“And be able to have the love I have for the game and the love for competition be intertwined, I think that's one of the reasons why I've had a successful career. I just love doing the work. I love logging the time in, and I love preparing.

“I love competing, and I love that feeling when everything's on fire with a chance to win and you either you do or you don't.”

While many are ruling him out of winning a 16th Major Championship this week, he may still create history via a different route by becoming the first player to make 24 consecutive cuts at Augusta National.

The three-time Champion Golfer of the Year is currently tied with Gary Player and good friend Fred Couples on 24.

“Yeah, I think it's consistency, it's longevity, and it's an understanding of how to play this golf course,” said Woods when responding to a question about potentially making another cut.

Tiger Woods celebrates
Tiger Woods won a fifth Green Jacket in 2019 Image Credit: Reuters

“That's one of the reasons why you see players that are in their 50s and 60s make cuts here, or it's players in their late 40s have runs at winning the event, just the understanding of how to play it.

“Now, you still have to go out and execute it, but there's a lot of knowledge that goes into understanding how to play it. And, granted, every tee box has been changed since the first time I played. Every green has been changed. But the overall configuration of how they roll and how they move and the angles you take, that hasn't changed.

“That's the neat thing about this. I can still go through the mental Rolodex and bring out a few putts from the '90s that still move generally in that direction and the effect that Rae's Creek has on certain shots and putts. And it means a lot.”