Woods endures 'brutal' stretch ahead of Players Championship

Tue May 5, 2015 9:16pm EDT
 
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By Ben Everill

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Florida (Reuters) - Tiger Woods admitted on Tuesday to sleepless nights in the lead-up to this week's Players Championship as he wrestles with the anniversary of his father's death and recent breakup with Lindsey Vonn.

Returning to golf for the first time since his comeback at the Masters last month and since announcing on Sunday that his near three-year relationship with U.S. Olympic skier Vonn was over, Woods admitted the last three days have been "brutal."

Sunday also marked the nine-year anniversary of his father Earl's death, and Woods did not sugarcoat his feelings.

"Obviously it does affect me. It is tough. There's no doubt. I'm not going to lie about that," said Woods.

"This time of year is really, really hard on me. This three-day window is really hard. I haven't slept. These last three days ... is just brutal on me, and then with obviously what happened on Sunday, it just adds to it."

But the 2013 Players Championship winner is ready to get back down to business, even if his practice round on Tuesday with Australian Jason Day was scratchy.

He lost a handful of balls and lost the ball both right and left in perhaps worrying signs ahead of Thursday's opening round, where he will tee off with Australia's Adam Scott and Germany's Martin Kaymer.

But Woods, who tied for 17th at Augusta National, instead chose to focus on his practice coming into this week for what is widely regarded as golf's unofficial fifth major.   Continued...

 
Golfer Tiger Woods of the U.S. attends a fan event in Tokyo, Japan April 26, 2015. REUTERS/Yuya Shino