Tiger Woods: Golfer is … ‘progressing nicely’
(CNN) — Tiger Woods is back playing golf … at least in his house.
The former world No. 1 posted a video of himself hitting a ball in a virtual video game on his Twitter account, with a two-word caption “progressing nicely.”
The video, which Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg confirmed was shot Wednesday morning, comes after the golfer’s representative rubbished speculation the 14-time major champion is struggling to move and is in pain sitting down as he recovers from his third back surgery.
Golf journalist Robert Lusetich and Twitter user the Secret Tour Pro — an account of an unnamed PGA Tour player — claimed that Woods is unable to walk for long periods, cannot climb stairs and needs to sit with the car passenger seat fully reclined.
“The tweets that appeared this weekend about Tiger’s health are ridiculous and absolutely false,” said Steinberg in a statement.
“It’s reprehensible that every few months someone makes something up and it’s treated like a real story.
“Tiger continues to work on his rehabilitation and we will have an accurate update at the appropriate time.'”
Woods’ close friend and fellow pro, Notah Begay, reportedly backed up Steinberg’s assessment.
The Golf Channel’s Tim Rosaforte claims he spoke to Begay, who said Woods’ condition is improving, while Davis Love III — the U.S. Ryder Cup captain — told Rosaforte he is “making progress.”
“Notah Begay, his long-time friend, his advisor through this, told me he was getting better and actually starting to move like a human being again,” Rosaforte said on the Golf Channel.
“All you hear now are stories about Tiger dropping his children off at school, hanging out at his restaurant. Nobody said he was wincing, everybody said he looks good and appears to be quite happy.”
Rosaforte was, however, reluctant to put an estimated timeframe on Woods’ return.
“I’m not going to say a guess like I did a year ago, I’m thinking later in the summer, if at all,” he added.
“He’s playing the long game. He’s got Notah in his ear all the time and the one thing Notah keeps telling him is that, ‘nobody has ever been criticised for coming back too late.'”
The former world No. 1 last played at the Wyndham Championship in August and two months later underwent a third microdiscectomy, a procedure to remove bone around a pinched nerve to allow space for it to heal.
Woods admitted in November there was no timeframe for his return to the sport after the surgery.
“There is no timetable for this and that’s been the hardest mindset adjustment is that I don’t know,” he lamented. “Where is the light at the end of the tunnel? I don’t know, so that’s been hard.”
“There is nothing I can look forward to, nothing I can build towards.”
The world No. 445 first underwent lower back surgery in March 2014, before undergoing subsequent operations in September and a follow-up in October of last year.