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Tiger revamps game for older body

(China Daily)

09:06, April 12, 2013

World's No 1 player is still 'tinkering' as he chases 15th major title at Augusta

Tiger Woods sees himself much like pal and retired NBA legend Michael Jordan and if his second act in golf rivals that of Jordan with the Chicago Bulls, it promises to be spectacular.

World No 1 Woods is considered the man to beat this week at the 77th Masters, where he will try to win his 15th major title as he chases the all-time record of 18 majors won by Jack Nicklaus.

Woods has revamped his swing, in part to avoid stress and punishment on his surgically-repaired knees, and said what he has lost in elasticity of swing he makes up for with greater strength and power.

"Well, certainly at 37, I'm not what I was when I was 19 as far as flexibility," Woods said. "I'm far stronger and far more explosive than I was then. Just certainly don't have the elasticity, and that's a function of age."

That's when Woods invoked the memory of basketball icon Jordan, who won six NBA titles in the 1990s with the Bulls as well as leading the 1992 US Olympic "Dream Team" of NBA stars to a gold medal at Barcelona.

Jordan won three NBA titles in a row with the Bulls with a fast-paced, high-leaping, slam dunking style that inspired the "Jumpman" logo which is still among the most popular brands in sport marketing.

But after a two-year retirement and a failed flirtation with baseball, Jordan returned and had another NBA title "three-peat" with the Bulls.

An older Jordan lacked the breakaway speed of younger days but was deadly with a fadeaway jump shot and incorporated more of his teammates, from sharpsooting guard Steve Kerr and playmaker Scottie Pippen to Australian big man Luc Longley.

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