Tiger Woods thrilled to be back on course but final round 76 dulls return as he finishes 15th of 18 players

Ross McLean
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Hero World Challenge - Final Round
Tiger Woods carded a final round of 76 on his competitive return (Source: Getty)

Former world No1 Tiger Woods revelled in his return to the course despite finishing 15th of 18 players at the Hero World Challenge, 14 shots adrift of winner Hideki Matsuyama.

Woods, a 14-time Major champion, navigated 72 holes in the Bahamas on his first taste of competitive action for 15 months following chronic back injuries, although he fired a final round of 76 – his worst of the week.

“There were some pretty dire times when I couldn’t move,” said the 40-year-old of his time away from the game. “You just lay there and you can’t move. Those are scary times.

“It’s great to be back playing against the best players in the world, but unfortunately I made a lot of mistakes this week. I made some poor decisions.

“Getting my lights back and my body back and focusing for a long period of time, there are things I’ve missed for a year and a half.

I’ve made some birdies this week, which is nice. I always want to be aggressive, but I made some bad mistakes.”

Japan’s Matsuyama claimed the title after carding a closing 73 to take his overall score to 18 under, two clear of Open champion Henrik Stenson.