2011 was quite a year for Tiger Woods. I think he's finally got his game back and can concentrate on returning to a position of dominance in professional golf. To me, his play of late has been very strong, as evidenced by his win at the Chevron World Challenge, good play in The Presidents Cup and a third place finish at the Australian Open. Off the course, he's seen the return of high profile sponsors like Rolex, who recently signed on to part of Team Tiger.
After that flurry of tournaments to finish off 2011, Tiger may just be hurting a little. On his blog at tigerwoods.com on December 15, he said: "I going to take a couple weeks off and let my body recover a little bit. And then I will start getting ready for 2012."
Before he gets back to the course, Tiger will make an appearance at the Fiesta Bowl on January 2 in Arizona. He'll be there to watch his alma mater, the Stanford Cardinals, play the Oklahoma State Cowboys as an honorary team captain. Tiger went to Stanford and even had a class with Stanford's head football coach David Shaw (back when they were both students there).
Following the Fiesta Bowl, Tiger will take off to the Middle East where he will play in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates. The event is the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship and it's all happening January 26-29, 2012.
I'm looking forward to the event, it will bring a lot of golf's current superstars together in one tournament, including Tiger Woods. U.S. Masters winner Charl Schwartzel, U.S. Open winner Rory McIlroy and British Open winner Darren Clarke will all be there, along with Luke Diamond, the world's current top-ranked player. It will be Tiger's first time playing at the tournament. I think the Abu Dhabi tournament will be a chance to see if Tiger can keep up his level of play and will be a good predictor of how good a year 2012 will be for Tiger Woods.
The Chevron event was his first win with new caddie Joe LaCava on the bag. I think the two are a good combination and seem to have a good rapport together. In his blog, Tiger says about LaCava: "He's been awesome. He's definitely very calm out here. That's why it's fun to be out there with him. We just have a great time. We do talk a lot of sports...We just have a ton of fun out there."
Ted Sherman is a life-long golf player and fan of the game. As he ages, he tends to watch more golf than he plays, but still gets out on the course or the range a few times a month. Follow Ted on Twitter, @travel4seniors.
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