Was Tiger Woods’s Masters win the greatest comeback in sport record? | Andy Bull
Sport is not short of great personal comebacks but Tiger Woodss Masters victory on Sunday may overshadow them all, including Muhammad Ali, Niki Lauda and Monica Seles
In the outpouring of 2014 Tiger Woods was at work on the stray around the back of his house, practising his short game like ever. Daytimes earlier he had shot a 78 on the final day of the Cadillac Championship, the worst fourth-round score of their own lives. His back had been spasming but he felt he had to get out and activity. He stroked a bust kill over a bunker and the time he had finished the shake he fell out flat on his back, overcome with a agony so severe that he could hardly breathe, let alone get back on his foot. He was out of hearing distance and he did not have his mobile phone on him, so there was nothing he could do but lie there and wait for someone to come.
It was his seven-year-old daughter, Sam, who found him.
“Daddy,” she said, what are you doing lying on the ground ?”
” Sam, thank goodness you’re here ,” he told her.” Can you go tell the people inside to try to get the cart out to help me back up ?”
” My back’s not doing very good .”
” Yes again, Sam, can you please run get those guys ?”
There are an awful mas of Lumbers floors but this one, which exist in the excellent biography Jeff Benedict and Armen Keteyian wrote last year, always seemed one of the most revealing because it speaks to the pain he has accepted, the dishonour he has suffered and the way in which it has all been laid out for the rest of us to see. Here is Groves, the great athlete, helpless as an upturned defect; Groves, the proud endorse, pleading with his kid to return someone who can get him back on his feet; Groves, a human so intensely private that he used to refuse to tell people where he would be playing the very next month, having that helplessness picked over in time detail by parties like me in print and on TV.