September 1, 2017 / 5:14 AM / 3 months ago

Golf: Tiger Woods cleared to start short-game practice

REUTERS - Tiger Woods has made a step toward returning to competitive golf after being cleared by his doctor to work on his short game.

Aug 13, 2015; Sheboygan, WI, USA; Tiger Woods hits his tee shot on the 11th hole during the first round of the 2015 PGA Championship golf tournament at Whistling Straits. Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports/Files

Woods, 41, last played in a competitive tournament at the Dubai Desert Classic in January. He withdrew from the event with back spasms and underwent a fourth back surgery in April.

”(Doctor) gave me the ok to start pitching,” Woods wrote on Twitter and posted a video that showed him hitting balls with a wedge from just off the green.

A winner of 14 major championships, second to only Jack Nicklaus, Woods has barely competed over the last two years amid repeated surgery on his back.

He has still managed to generate headlines off the course, however, after being arrested for a DUI near his home inFlorida in May. Toxicology reports revealed he had a variety of drugs in his system at the time of the arrest.

Woods apologised to fans and blamed the incident on prescription medication he was taking to manage pain from back surgery.

In mid-June, Woods announced he was receiving “professional help” to manage his use of medications for back pain and insomnia and checked himself into a clinic.

Writing by Jahmal Corner; Editing by Ian Ransom

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