AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) - While acknowledging he made some "incredibly poor decisions" inhis personal life, Tiger Woods still thinks he can win the Masters— even coming back from a five-month layoff.
"Nothing's changed," Woods said Monday during an extraordinary35-minute news conference at Augusta National. "I'm going to go outthere and try to win this thing."
Woods entered the interview room with a smile on his face andstopped to hug one of the green-jacketed club members, RonTownsend. Woods again took full blame for his personal failings butstopped short of providing many new details. He wouldn't say why heentered rehab for 45 days nor would he go into specifics about hisinfamous November night car crash, other than to say it took fivestitches to close a lip wound.
"All I know is I acted just terribly," said Woods, sporting themakings of a goatee. "I just made some incredibly bad decisions,decisions that hurt so many people close to me."
He said his wife, Elin, would not be at Augusta. His personallife fell apart after revelations that he had multiple extramaritalaffairs during their 5½-year marriage.
Woods thanked his fellow golfers for the support he's receivedsince announcing his return to the PGA Tour and said he waspleasantly surprised how well the fans treated him during apractice round Monday.
The outing was his first before a gallery since the sex scandalmade him a tawdry tabloid fixture. He even flashed a bit ofuncharacteristic charm, stopping to sign autographs —something he rarely does — while heading to the practicerange to get in a few extra swings.
"The encouragement I got, it blew me away," he said. "It reallydid. The people here over the years, I know they've been extremelyrespectful. But today is just something that touched my heartpretty good."
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