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Tiger Woods seeking domination in his 30's

Tiger Woods has set his sights on winning more major championships in his thirties than the record 10 he piled up in his twenties.

The world number one, who turned 30 in December, boosted his career tally with victories at last year's U.S. Masters and British Open.

"That's my intention," American Woods told a Masters teleconference on Wednesday. "I will continue working hard and being diligent about every week that I play.

"It's always going to be difficult to win tournaments as the fields get better. It's always a challenge to win and to try to improve. But, for me, hunger is never a question.

"There's a lot I'm very proud of over the last decade, in particular that I was able to perform at a high level consistently for that time," added Woods, who has made no secret of his desire to surpass the record career haul of 18 majors claimed by Jack Nicklaus.

"It's only 10 years, but that's a long period of time. Hopefully I can do that for the rest of my career."

Woods, who won his first two starts of the year via playoffs despite not being completely on top of his game, is unconcerned about his perennial waywardness off the tee.

"As I've got longer, it's become harder to find fairways," he said. "I'm probably 30 yards longer than when I first came out here.

"It's more and more difficult to find fairways because the dispersal pattern increases," added the Florida-based professional who has never been known for his driving accuracy.

"I'm certainly feeling more confident about using a driver. With that in my mind, I have missed more fairways but I've had a better feeling off the tees."

For Woods, victories at the Buick Invitational in San Diego two weeks ago and at the European Tour's Dubai Desert Classic on Sunday were the perfect launch-pad for the year.

"Any time you can win, it always boosts your confidence," he said. "Granted I got into two playoffs but hey: a win is a win.

"Especially coming off of last year. I had a wonderful year last year and basically I have continued that success at the start of this year. It's exciting for me for the future."

Apart from his two major triumphs in 2005, Woods won a further four titles on the PGA Tour before ending his campaign with player of the year honours and season's earnings of more than $10 million.

Woods, who has always thrived in the heat of battle, extended his playoff record to 13 wins out of 14 worldwide after edging out Ernie Els at the first extra hole in Dubai at the weekend.

"When I get into a playoff, I feel very comfortable because it's a match play situation," he said. "It is match play at its epitome because it can hinge on one shot on one hole.

"Anything can happen at any given time. Momentum can shift with one swing.

"Going one-on-one like that is always fun. We don't get to do that very often. It's what we did as amateurs, and it's what we did as juniors."

Woods, who is not playing in this week's Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, will defend his U.S. Masters crown at Augusta National from Apr. 6-9.

February 9, 2006

 




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