LOS ANGELES – The wait is over.
Tiger Woods will play next week’s Honda Classic, tournament officials announced late Friday afternoon.
Woods had been vague earlier this week when asked if he planned to play the event – which will be his first back-to-back starts since last year when he played the Farmers Insurance Open followed by the Dubai Desert Classic, when he withdrew and ended up having fusion surgery on his lower back. But he informed the PGA Tour before he teed off for Round 2 at the Genesis Open that he would be in the field at PGA National.
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“We got the call before he teed off,” said Ken Kennerly, the Honda Classic’s executive director. “It’s phenomenal for the tournament. Look at what he did in San Diego for the TV ratings. He’s always been very upfront about wanting to play here.”
Woods, who lives in south Florida, last played the Honda Classic in 2014 when he withdrew after three rounds with a back injury. He’s played the event four times and finished runner-up in 2012.
The news is particularly encouraging considering Woods began this season unsure of how his body and back would respond to tournament conditions.
“I need some tournament rounds and next week is a home match and I will be able to get some more work done this weekend,” Woods said following a second-round 76 at Riviera that left him five strokes outside the cut.
The last time Woods played consecutive weeks on Tour was in 2015 when he went from the PGA Championship, where he missed the cut, to the Wyndham Championship, his last top-10 (T-10) on Tour.