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By : BGA Proshop
With the Presidents Cup just a year away at Royal Melbourne in Victoria, Tiger Woods was out last week promoting the tournament as the captain for Team USA.
In move that might have surprised some golfer but probably not for those in the industry, Woods gave the strongest indication that he will tee it up next year as a playing captain.
This is great news for the event as a healthy Woods playing in any tournament is a huge boost but with the likes of Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas and Brooks Koepka the star studded American team was already going to draw a massive crowd.
While at a press conference in Melbourne last week, Wood said “"If I am part of the top eight, yes, I will play".
“I want to compete. I want to play. Being a vice captain the last couple years, you realize you really don't control the play. You have to sit back and watch. And as a player and as a competitor, you want to always be in control and be able to compete and play.”
The top eight is calculated from FedEx Cup points accrued on the PGA Tour during a weighted two-year period leading up to the Tour Championship. Both teams will have eight qualifiers and four captain's picks and Woods currently sits 16th on the US team standings.
"It's still a year out from the event," he said.
But eight-time Cup veteran also has the option to select himself.
“After the TOUR Championship, we'll have our top eight guys, and hopefully I'll be part of the top eight. If not, then myself and my vice captains are going to have to figure out - as well as the other top eight players - who are the next four guys that will be best served to be part of this team, to come down here and compete,” he said.
“I'm going to have to defer a lot of information to my vice captains and get a lot of their opinions and also my team, whether or not I can play and do both roles.”
Woods made his Cup debut at Royal Melbourne in 1998 - the only edition the Internationals have won.
He also played the 2011 Cup at Royal Melbourne and said the iconic Melbourne sandbelt course hadn't changed in the seven years since he last visited Australia.
"It really hasn't; it looks about the same," Woods said.
"(Royal Melbourne) is one of the most unique courses you can play; it's so short, so fast and so tricky.
"But it's always been one of my favourite (trips) to come down here because we don't often get chances to play venues like this."
“It is one of the greatest golf courses in all of the world. The layout is fantastic. It's very tough. It's tricky. They've lengthened a couple of the holes. But nothing major. Normally over the course of time, a lot of golf courses get modernized, get lengthened, change different angles, add bunkers, whatever it may be, but they haven't done that at Royal. It's the same golf course.”
If I was a betting man I think Tiger Woods will tee it up in the 2019 Presidents Cup.