It might be hard to believe, but 22 years since Tiger Woods won his first major championship, he is again the Masters champion. Back in 1997, he was 21 years old at the time, and he rewrote the record books with his breakthrough major win. He won it three more times, but his last victory was back in 2005 -- that is, until 14 years on, he won a fifth.
Now that Woods is again the Masters champion, can he win the next major, the PGA Championship at Bethpage State Park in May?
The bookmakers have odds on Woods as the favorite, but look to take advantage of free bets and no deposit offers that are available. Some bookmakers are offering odds as long as 10-1 on Woods, which many golf fans will see as just too good an opportunity to refuse coming off his 15th major win.
The long road back
More than a decade had gone by since he lifted any major title, the last before this April being the US Open in 2008. Since then, a combination of injury and personal problems have dogged the biggest name in golf.
Just a few years ago, Woods was telling reporters that he was unable to get up from the couch to go and watch his children play soccer. The idea of swinging a golf club, far less competing in a major tournament again, seemed impossible. Yet the world of sport is littered with amazing battles against adversity, and following spinal fusion surgery in April 2017, he looked somewhat like the Tiger of old in 2018, with strong performances in both the PGA Championship and the British Open last year.
He topped those off with his first PGA Tour win for five years at the Tour Championship at East Lake in Atlanta, winning by two shots in a field that included Justin Rose, Rory McIlroy and Rickie Fowler.
A serious contender
Woods has worked hard to get back to where he is today and has proved that he can still win against anyone. At East Lake, he was followed around the course by adoring fans chanting “USA, USA,” and the support was even more vociferous in Augusta. Now add in a New York crowd at a venue where he's won a major before, and Bethpage should be in pandemonium. All this will combine to make Woods a serious contender, but at the same time, we need to remember that the bookmakers are no fools, and those 10-1 odds are there for a reason. A lot of people place a wager on Woods.
Clearly, a 43-year-old Woods remains among the best in the world. But with the likes of Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka at the top of their games, Woods will truly have to continue rolling back the years to add another chapter to his incredible fairy tale.