Spoof video shows Tiger Woods reacting to doubters following Tour Championship victory

AFP | Thomas Bjorn says his European team won't be daunted by a fearsome United States line-up

AFP | Thomas Bjorn says his European team won't be daunted by a fearsome United States line-up

The 14-times major champion ended a five-year drought with an emotional victory at East Lake in Atlanta on Sunday.

Much has happened since, including four back surgeries and his arrest for driving under the influence of painkillers in May past year which showed the world a champion at his lowest.

One year ago, while recovering from a fourth back surgery, he still had no idea if he could come back to the highest level of golf.

Vanquished, Rory McIlroy compared the scenes which greeted Tiger Woods' first victory in five years to those which saw Jack Nicklaus end a similarly lengthy winless streak almost 40 years ago. "I was over the back of the green facing double-bogey in the face there and had a really good up-and-down to get to 6-under".

Woods' comeback has reinvigorated speculation that he could break Jack Nicklaus' record for the most major wins of all time, with 18 - a feat Nicklaus described as "realistic." "Just I guess the amount of attention and the buzz around the PGA Championship, around the Tour Championship, the crowd. on the 18th fairway yesterday was incredible".

All the focus was on Woods however, who is looking to put right a poor Ryder Cup record that is out of keeping with his stunning achievements elsewhere in golf.

"I spent 25 years playing professional golf with Tiger Woods and any time he does anything great that's a story and that's where we want to see him", he said.

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However, he capitulated on the front nine and the challenge never materialized but, despite the disappointment, McIlroy was still able to enjoy the surreal walk down the 18th fairway with Woods.

While many had doubted whether Woods would ever be competitive again, he sent a convincing message that he is indeed back.

The victory was his first since he won the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in 2013, and that five-year wait had led many to believe that Woods was incapable of returning to his former glory, a view that many people are now regretting.

"But this is under different circumstances", Woods said to media after the final round. "It means a lot more to me now in that sense because I didn't know if I'd ever be out here playing again, doing this again". "The up and down at 17 was huge", added Woods, who was flying to Paris later Sunday with the U.S. team for week's Ryder Cup. "Not that this event needs much more energy brought to it [because] it's probably the biggest, the grandest event in all of golf, but [Woods' win] will add that much more excitement, I believe".

NZ Māori Golf Association board member Bernie O'Donnell says Tiger is a once-in-a-generation golfer, and those who get to witness him at his best should count themselves lucky. He finished at 11-under 269 and won $1.62 million, along with a $3 million bonus for finishing second in the FedEx Cup. Woods explained to reporters that from there, he just wanted to play like "every weekend hacker" - not mess up.

Woods now goes to France, where he'll play in the Ryder Cup with the rest of his US teammates.

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