Woods ready for Hoylake

Tiger WoodsTiger Woods (16/1 Open Championship outright) has warned his rivals that he is feeling back to his best ahead of next week’s Open Championship at Hoylake.

The former world number one missed both the Masters and the US Open after deciding to have surgery on his troublesome back and looked less than convincing when he returned to the action at last month’s Quicken Loans National at Congressional, missing the cut after rounds of 74 and 75.

However, despite not having won a major since 2008, Woods is again amongst the favourites behind Rory McIlroy (12/1 favourite Open Champion outright) and Martin Kaymer (14/1 second favourite) to win at Royal Liverpool and will be looking to repeat his performance of eight years ago when he plotted his way around the course expertly to claim his third Claret Jug.

After struggling following previous operations, the American made a point this time around of biding his time in his recovery to ensure he didn’t cause a reaction and has also tailored his swing to relieve the pressure on his spine.

Having arrived early on Merseyside to prepare for the event, the 38-year-old says he is feeling confident about his chances, warning his rivals that he now feels fitter than ever.

“Congressional was big for me, the fact I could go out there and play and I got better as the days went on,” he said. “It was a little bit wary and iffy if that was going to happen or not, especially with how hard I was hitting the ball.

“But I’ve got my speed back, which is nice, and I’m starting to hit the ball out there again. I’m only going to get stronger. As the weeks go on, I’m getting strong and faster.”

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