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Tiger Woods rates season a great success

Tiger Woods usually measures the success of a season by the number of majors he wins but after clinching a Presidents Cup for the U.S. on Sunday the world number one conceded this year had been special.

While Woods was unable to add to his collection of 14 major titles, it would be hard to find any disappointment in a campaign that produced six PGA Tour wins, a $10 million bonus as Tour Championship winner and the winning putt in a 19 1/2 to 14 1/2 Cup win over the Internationals.

“It’s a great year, are you kidding me?,” Woods told reporters. “Even though I didn’t win a major championship, to come back from what I came back from, to have the success I had this year, I don’t think anyone would have predicted that and I’m very proud of that.”

The season began with great uncertainty for Woods, who did not return to the PGA Tour until late February for the WGC-Accenture Match Play World Championship after eight months out recovering from reconstructive knee surgery.

The 33-year-old American quickly confirmed he was back at his best, his victories producing more than $20 million in prize money to make him sport’s first $1 billion athlete according to Forbes magazine.

The Presidents Cup victory also came with a tasty measure of revenge for Woods, who secured the trophy with a six-foot putt for a crushing 6&5 win over South Korea’s Yang Yong-eun, who spectacularly overhauled him in the final round of the PGA Championship.

“He got me there and I figured I would get him here,” said Woods. “It certainly wasn’t the same atmosphere but it was an important but then it was still an important point.

“He got off to a good start.

“He birdied the first and I made a mistake there and from then on, I actually played pretty good.

“I hit a couple loose shots here and there but I really putted well, other than missing that putt over there at 12, that was about it.”

There were plenty of fist-pumps during a week in which Woods went unbeaten, posting a record of 5-0, but the clinching putt produced only a muted reaction, the world number one taking off his cap then walking over to shake hands with Yang.

“I did not know at all because last time I saw the board, we were down six matches, so I figured that I could handle my match and just worry about that,” said Woods, who becomes just third player to go 5-0 in a Presidents Cup giving him a record 18 career wins.

“I saw we were down six matches at one point so I just kept my head down and tried to extend my own lead.

“I did pretty good coming in.”


October 13, 2009

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