Tiger To Return To Golf

United States vice-captain Tiger Woods smiles during a practice round for the Ryder Cup golf tournament Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2016, at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minn. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

The next PGA Tour season starts Thursday — two weeks after the last one ended — and for some fans, it cannot get here soon enough. Tiger Woods is returning to golf.

Woods made his return official on Friday by entering the Safeway Open in Napa, Calif., the first event on the PGA Tour’s wraparound schedule. He said a month ago that he hoped to play the tournament at Silverado Resort, but he had until Friday afternoon to commit.

Woods last played on Aug. 23, 2015, at the Wyndham Championship in a last-minute bid to qualify for the FedEx Cup playoffs. A month later, he announced a second operation on his back, then a third operation a month after that.

CHASKA, MN - SEPTEMBER 28: Vice-captain Tiger Woods of the United States high fives fans during practice prior to the 2016 Ryder Cup at Hazeltine National Golf Club on September 28, 2016 in Chaska, Minnesota. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

Even through other operations on his knee, Woods, 40, has never spent this long away from competition. And never has the No. 767 player in the world attracted so much attention.

“My rehabilitation is to the point where I’m comfortable making plans, but I still have work to do,” Woods said last month. “Whether I can play depends on my continued progress and recovery. My hope is to have my game ready to go.  … It could be a fun fall.”

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