Tiger Woods is facing what he calls a long and tedious recovery from another back surgery and is not sure when he will come back.
Tiger Woods had an operation on his back for a second time last month after a routine check discovered a fragmented disc pinching a nerve.
He last played at the Wyndham Championship on August 23, where he tied for 10th in what was his best finish on the PGA Tour for nearly two years.
His first surgery came just before the US Masters in 2014, when he was out of action for nearly three months, although he later admitted he returned too early.
“Rehab will be soon, and it will be tedious and long,” he said. “The last one, it took me awhile to get back. Some players on tour have done the same procedure and to be back pain-free it took them over a year.”
Woods, who turns 40 in December, has not won a major championship since the US Open in 2008 and remains on 14 majors, four short of Jack Nicklaus’ record, but the world No 334 has not given up hope of catching ‘The Golden Bear’.
“It’s important for me to have more than 18 majors when all is said and done,” he said. “It took Jack his whole career to achieve it and mine is not done yet. I believe that I have a very good record for 20 years on the tour.
“The main thing is to get fit and to reach my 40s with good health to be as successful as Vijay, who won most of his tournaments at that age. It’s something that I hope I will be able to do,” he said. “I want to play at an elite level with the new kids for a long, long time.”
Woods has not won since the 2013 Bridgestone Invitational for his 79th career win on the PGA Tour, just three short of the record held by Sam Snead.
“I need to be healthy again,” he added. “This year I tried to play after the back surgery and it wasn’t fun because all of the pain.
“Also after my last surgery, I was changing my swing and to be able to do that successfully you have to practice a lot, and I could not practice because I was doing the rehab. It was a very complicated situation because of that.”
Woods has not set a timetable on when he will start rehabilitation or a date for his likely return.
“I need to return with my explosiveness, and to do that, I need to practice for longer periods of time,” he said. “It’s going to take several months of hard work.”