The crowd reacted in triumphant cheers and screams after witnessing a moment that will forever be near the top in Golf history.
Tiger Woods ended an 11-year major title drought and completed one of sport’s greatest comebacks at the Masters on Sunday after claiming a fifth Green Jacket at Augusta National Golf Club.
Battling injuries with repetitive surgeries, personal problems and a decline in overall performance, Woods persevered through everything and let his emotions emphatically come to light after holding his trophy.
Woods shot a 2-under par 70 to win his first green jacket since 2005 and his first major since the 2008. His 13-under 275 held on to edge out Dustin Johnson, Xander Schauffle, and Brooks Koepeka all by one stroke.
“Just unreal, to be honest with you,” Woods said. “Just the whole tournament has meant so much to me over the years. Coming here in ‘95 for the first time and being able to play as an amateur. Winning in ’97 and then come full circle 22 years later, to be able to do it again. And just the way it all transpired today.
“There we’re so many different scenarios that could have transpired on that back nine. There we’re so many guys who had a chance to win. Leaderboard was absolutely packed, and everyone was playing well. You couldn’t have had more drama than we all had out there, and now I know why I’m balding. This stuff is hard.”
Tiger Woods made history in 1997 when he won his first Masters at the age of 21, as well as became first Black man to win the tournament according to Vox.
His long-awaited return to glory was appreciated by many, but no more than by the people who care for him the most.
Woods celebrated after walking away from the 18th green and picked up his 10-year-old son, Charlie. He then went on to hug his mother and then his 11-year-old daughter, Sam.
“This has meant so much to me and my family, this tournament, and to have everyone here, it’s something I’ll never, ever forget.”
Both children were in attendance last year when Woods played well, but ultimately blew a lead at the Open Championship to Francesco Molinari. Woods wanted to win so badly in front of his children for the first time and he did exactly that at Augusta.
“I wasn’t going to let that happen to them twice,” he said. “To let them see what it’s like to have their dad win a major championship, I hope it’s something they’ll never forget.”
With 15 major championships, Woods is second only to Jack Nicklaus with 18.
The history between the two legends has gone on for years and Nicklaus was one of the many individuals to congratulate his friend on the achievement.
“From Twitter, Nicklaus tweeted, “A big ‘well done’ from me to [Tiger Woods]. I am so happy for him and for the game of golf. This is just fantastic.”
“I thought for a long time that he was going to win again,” added Nicklaus. “The next two majors are at Bethpage, where he has won and at Pebble Beach, where he has won. So, he has got me shaking in my boots.”
The Twitter posts continued throughout the day and icons all around the globe congratulated the 43-year-old’s successes.
Former President, Barack Obama, fellow athletes in LeBron James and Serena Williams were just a few other individuals who acknowledged the star golfer.
“Congratulations, Tiger! To come back and win the Masters after all the highs and lows is a testament to excellence, grit, and determination,” said Obama.
“I am literally in tears watching [Tiger Woods], this greatness is like no other,” said Williams. “Knowing all you have been through physically to come back and do what you just did today? Wow, congrats a million times! I am so inspired, thank you buddy.”
“I salute you, [hashtag] Inspired,” said James.
Even with completing one of the greatest sports comebacks of all-time, there still may be more added to this story.
In July, at the US Open at Pebble Beach, Woods will have a chance to tie Nicklaus’ tally of major wins if he continues with the momentum he has created.
“Tiger, Tiger, Tiger!” will surely be the chant yet again, when Woods approaches a final putt with more history on the line. The world will undoubtedly be watching.