Can Tiger Woods bounce back from worst year ever?

Tiger Woods is one of the best golfers in history. There’s no denying that fact as the statistics back it up with his number of major championships and his win percentage. However, 2010 was his worst year ever on the golf course. Before the year started Woods had won 28.1 per cent of the tournaments he played in. This year it dropped to zero. Woods also saw his stranglehold on the number-one ranking come to an end after being the world’s top golfer for a remarkable total of 623 weeks.

Because Woods means so much to the sport of golf it’s such a big story when he doesn’t do well. So going winless in 2010 and not finishing higher than fourth in any event is big news. In fact, he didn’t really do too well in any area of his game this year.

His birdie average of 3.78 had him tied for 29th place. His scoring average for the year was 70.32 which would have him tied for 28th spot and his percentage for fairway hits was 57.21. But does his decline necessarily mean he can’t bounce back to reclaim the number-one spot?

Woods certainly is the only golfer to have a bad year, and unlike many others, he actually had a reason for it due to his personal problems over the last 12 months. Going a year without a victory isn’t anything new for most golfers as some of the game’s best, such as Sam Snead, Jack Nicklaus, Gene Sarazen, and Cary Middlecoff all went through winless years in their great careers.

In this era, Vijay Singh and Phil Mickelson have suffered the same fate, with Mickelson going two full years without a win and Singh doing it three times. But looking ahead to the major golf championships in 2011, Woods will almost certainly be a favourite Augusta, since he’s won it four times and has place in the tournament’s top 10 a consistent 11 times out of 14 as a professional.

The U.S. Open will take place Congressional, where Woods hosted the AT&T National. He won his own event there in 2009 and finished in a tie for sixth place in 2007. However, at the U.S. Open at Congressional in 1997 he ended up in a tie for 19th place.

The Open Championship will be held at Royal St. George’s next year. The last time it was held there was in 2003 when Woods tied for fourth place, just two shots back from Ben Curtis. The PGA Championship will take place at the Atlanta Athletic Club. It was held there in 2001 and Woods ended up in a 29th place tie.

Woods will be 35 before the year ends and has a lot of golf left in him, but how good he’ll be at it is anybody’s guess. But he’s still the biggest name in golf and there’s a good reason for that.