Tiger Woods might be the comeback story of the year when he makes his first competitive appearance this week since he limped away from the Masters in April.
However, he’s not the only player who’s been suffering a lot of pain and frustration this year – and he’s not the only one to be making a big comeback.
The super strong 20-man field at the 2023 Hero World Challenge in Albany, Bahamas, includes a player by the name of Will Zalatoris. Remember him? Yes, the guy with the short pants, ankle socks and questionable putting stroke.
The 27-year-old might well have claimed more than one PGA Tour by now had it not been for a back injury that stopped him in his tracks towards the end of the 2022 season.
Zalatoris, who finished runner-up at the US Open in 2022, had widely been regarded as a Major winner in waiting.
The American also came second at the Masters in 2021, and was beaten in a playoff by Justin Thomas at the 2022 PGA Championship.
His breakthrough on the PGA Tour eventually came when he got the better of Sepp Straka in a playoff to claim the FedEx St. Jude Championship in August 2022.
Just several weeks later, however, Zalatoris was forced to withdraw from the BMW Championship because of back pain, which was caused by two herniated discs.
Not only did the injury bring a premature end to his 2022 season, it also ruled him out of the Presidents Cup.
Following a couple of promising results at the start of the year, Zalatoris headed to Augusta in April, only to withdraw minutes before he was due to tee off, after which he underwent back surgery, which put an end to his hopes of making the US Ryder Cup team.
At last, however, it seems as though the former world number nine is fully fit and ready to kick-start his career.
And where better to announce your return than Tiger Woods' own event?
In a post on his Instagram account in early November, Zalatoris, said: “I’m very excited for the Hero World Challenge in three weeks.
“It has been a long year so I am glad I get to play one more time before this year ends and hope to end on a high note!”
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