Tiger Woods won the Zozo Championship in Japan on Monday. The 43-year old American golf icon equalled the PGA Tour record of 82 title wins. The record was originally set in 1965 by Woods' fellow American golfer, Sam Snead.
Nine weeks ago, Woods underwent his fifth knee surgery. The Zozo Championship marked the first event that the golf maestro participated in post surgery.
Snead won a PGA title for the last time when he was 52 years old. At only 43, Woods is very likely to overtake Snead in terms of the PGA title haul before the end of his career.
Speaking to journalists about the record-equalling feat, Woods reportedly said, "As far as playing until 52, I hope that's the case. If you would have asked me a few years ago, I would have given you a different answer, but certainly, the future looks brighter than it has. The body can't do what it used to but I can still think my way around the golf course. I know how to play and I was able to do that this week. There was a time if I didn't know if I would play again so I am very appreciative."
BBC reports that the former world number one admitted that his knee surgery was the biggest challenge to his comeback to the golf course. However, less than a year after going under the knife, he earned a three-shot victory against Japan's Hideki Matsuyama and secured a PGA Tour title in a seventh different country. Now, Woods aims to represent his nation in the 2020 Olympics.
Woods said that by the time the Olympics commence, he will be 44 years old. In the future, Woods may not get many chances to feature in the Olympics. Hence, he wants to make it big this time.
NBC reports that Woods climbed to No. 6 in the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) following his 82nd PGA Tour victory. However, he must continue advancing through the ranks to qualify for the 2020 Olympic Games. Woods moved from 13th in U.S. Olympic qualifying standings to 5th. The top four American golfers will qualify for the Tokyo Games.
In April this year, Woods ended his 11-year Masters drought, and ended up claiming his 15th major title. The world number 10 is now just three major titles short of Jack Nicklaus' record. Nicklaus holds a record 18 major titles to his name. Nicklaus won his last major trophy when he was 46.