Woods said The Bahamas is a special place

Describing The Bahamas as a “special place”, Tiger Woods suggested Tuesday that his love for the destination was one of the reasons he decided to make his comeback at the Hero World Challenge.

“The Bahamas is a special place… but I also made my comeback here because this is my event,” Woods said at a press conference at Albany.

The tournament, which will run from December 1 to 4 at the Albany golf course, will also feature 16 of the top 28 golfers in the world.

Asked how The Bahamas stacks up as a golfing destination for professional golfers, Woods suggested that it’s among the top.

“To come here to Albany, it doesn’t get a lot better than this,” he said. “I’ve had a lot of friends who are either athletes or celebrities come down here… We have one tenth of all the billionaires on the planet here and that’s saying something. For them to come here and feel safe and feel like they can be here and operate, run their businesses but also bring their families and enjoy leisure time here as well and have that privacy, is incredible.”

Taking a more personal tone, Woods added, “For me to have my kids feel like they can come down here and be safe and I can let them go, it makes me feel at ease. That’s one of the reasons I love coming down here. I love free diving. I love getting in the water and looking for bugs out there. It’s good stuff.”

Woods, who is one of the most decorated golfers in the world, has not played competitive golf since August 2015 following multiple back surgeries.

Woods said there were days during his recovery process when he thought his career was over.

“Not being able to get out of bed, not being able to move, how can I expect to come out here and swing a golf club at 120 miles an hour and be ballistic when I can’t even get out of bed?”

Woods said it’s taken a lot of work to get to where he is now. While he admitted that he’s nervous about his debut on Thursday, he still has the mindset to win.

“Well I’m going to try to do the same thing I always do,” Woods said. “I’m entered in an event. I’m going to try to win this thing… I’m going to be focused. I’m going to do what I can do and put the ball in the correct spots, give my myself looks and try to bury these putts and post, post scores and get myself in that mix come Sunday afternoon.

“I know that’s a tall order since I’ve been away from the game but the mindset is still the same. And whether physically, and also equipment, practice schedules, training all that has evolved, the mindset of competition hasn’t. That is to go out there and ty to beat these guys.”

Hero World Challenge defending champion Bubba Watson said he’s rooting for Woods, although he’s also hoping to repeat last year’s success. Watson added that he’s happy to be back in The Bahamas and playing on the Albany golf course.

“It’s a beautiful place here,” Watson said. “I mean my family loves coming here. I think all the families love coming here… The golf course is in great shape. It’s fun coming back here for this event. It’s an amazing event that they put on here.”

Scores of international journalists are in town for the Hero World Challenge and to capture Wood’s return. During today’s press conference, Hero MotoCorp Chairman and Managing Director Pawan Munjal welcomed them to The Bahamas.

“I would like to welcome you all to this beautiful setting and to present the world’s best golfers. This is one of the finest golfing destinations and it also happens to be the land of extraordinary natural wonders,” Munjal said.

Munjal also commended Woods for having the fortitude to start over. He said Woods’ presence brings a “special excitement” to the tournament.

Media Contact: Krystel Brown | Krbrown@bahamas.com | (242) 397-2793