Tiger Woods to Make 2015 Debut at Phoenix Open Super Bowl WeekErik Matuszewski
Tiger Woods will make his 2015 tournament debut at the U.S. PGA Tour’s Phoenix Open the same week the Super Bowl is held nearby in Arizona.
Woods last played in the event, which is scheduled for Jan. 29 through Feb. 1 at TPC Scottsdale, in 2001. He tied for fifth that year and was third in 1999.
Woods, a 14-time major champion whose 79 career PGA Tour wins rank second all-time to Sam Snead, is coming of his worst season as a professional. He played in nine tournaments worldwide, failed to finish better than 25th in a full-field event and had back surgery that forced him to miss four months.
“It will be great to return to Phoenix,” Woods said in a statement on his website. “The crowds are amazing and always enthusiastic, and the 16th hole is pretty unique in golf.”
The tournament set a PGA Tour record last year by drawing a weekly attendance of 563,008, surpassing the previous high set in 2008 when the Super Bowl was last held the same week at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. This year’s National Football League title game is scheduled for Feb. 1, the same day as the Phoenix Open’s final round.
The par-3 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale features stadium-style seating that can hold more than 15,000 fans, with 200 skyboxes and 5,000 general admission seats. Woods made a hole-in-one at the 16th hole during the 1997 Phoenix Open.
Woods, 39, also committed to play the following week in the PGA Tour’s Farmers Insurance Open from Feb. 5-8 at Torrey Pines Golf Course in La Jolla, California. Woods has won that tournament seven times, most recently in 2013, and captured his last major title at the course at the 2008 U.S. Open.
“Torrey is a very important place to me,” Woods said. “My pop took me there when I was younger, and I have a lot of special memories of watching the Tour play there when I was growing up.”
Woods last played a month ago, finishing last in the 18-player World Challenge he hosts in Orlando. It was his first event since missing the 36-hole cut at the PGA Championship in August and then undergoing back surgery.