Tiger Woods stepped into the field at Augusta National Golf Club on Monday at around 3 p.m. and the fans who were then milling out to head home immediately stopped in their tracks and gawked.
Pro golfers Fred Couples and Justin Thomas were also there to practice their shots, but they were overpowered by the luster of Woods.
When the word spread that the 42-year-old was on the range, the crowd grew thicker and when the three competitors were walking toward the 5th hole, the multitude felt like everybody was watching the finals.
Woods looked sharp and gave fans a treat when he putted a six-footer after an iron shot on the 6th hole.
Couples, ever the media savvy professional, knew why everybody was there.
He met with some of the reporters and quipped, “So are you guys going to ask about my round, or just about Tiger? Well, I hit a good drive on 1…”
But he turned serious as he believes that Woods would be the man to watch this week as the Masters tees off this weekend.
Couples also said that he took inspiration with the recovery of Woods, especially since he’s also struggling with a chronic back injury himself.
“I did okay today. I tried to hit a couple harder than I should have, but I did okay,” he said. “Tiger’s one of my best friends. I don’t see him much, but I just love the guy.”
Justin Thomas could only shake his head in awe at the charisma of Tiger.
“There’s no other tournament you hear roars in a practice round,” he said.
This was the first time that Woods stepped into the green since three years ago. But no other competition that’s closely associated with the second-winningest golfer of all time more than the Augusta National. The American is hoping that he could start another run on this field where he feels most at home.