Golf
Alex Malcolm, ESPN 24d

Tiger Woods best he's ever felt in three years, Jason Day says

Golf, Fantasy Golf

If the reports on the state of Tiger Woods' game are true, Jason Day says look out.

Woods is set to make his long-awaited return at the Hero World Challenge next week in the Bahamas, and there has been a groundswell of intrigue about the shape of his game after he posted several swings on social media recently.

Woods has been a mentor to Day, and the former world No.1 , who is preparing for a tilt at the Australian Open in Sydney this week, said he had been in contact with the American about his return to competitive golf.

"I did talk to him and he did say it's the best he's ever felt in three years," Day said on Wednesday. "He doesn't wake up with pain anymore, which is great.

"From what I see on Instagram and what he's been telling me, he says he's ready and I'm hoping that he is.

"Because from what I hear, he's hitting it very long; and if he's hitting it long and straight then that's going to be tough for us because it is Tiger Woods.

"He's always been a clutch putter and in amongst the best, and it will be interesting to see.

"With regards to him playing next week, there's no pressure. I think it's a 17- or 18-man field, there's no cut. He's playing at a tournament where last year I think he had the most birdies. He obviously suits that."

Day had further insight into the reports that Rickie Fowler had said Woods had been hitting it "way by" him in practice rounds at the Medalist in Florida.

The Australian was paired with former Wimbledon and US Open tennis champion Lleyton Hewitt in the Australian Open Pro-am playing partner on Wednesday, and Australia's Davis Cup captain has a residence in the Bahamas and knows Woods personally.

"I talked to Lleyton about it," Day said.

"Lleyton Hewitt knows him well and he ran into him there. He said that he's been putting well and obviously the swing is up in the air, depending on how he's going to play because of his back."

Jordan Spieth, who is also in Sydney to defend the Australian Open crown before heading to the Bahamas to play next week, had no intel on Woods having not seen him since the Presidents Cup in September, when Woods was an assistant captain.

"I have no idea where his game's at, because the last time I spent time with him he wasn't even hitting full swings yet," Spieth said

"But he was confident coming off of this last surgery to get back into it and to be able to have the time necessary and strength to practice as much injury free as possible."

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