Tiger Woods, one of the world’s best golfers, captured his fifth Masters championship Sunday, his 15th major professional victory after an 11-year drought from winning the sport’s biggest tournaments.
Woods shot a 2 under par 70 on a drizzly day at the Augusta National Golf Club in the southern U.S. state of Georgia to finish 13 under par for the tournament, a shot better than three other American golfers, Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka and Xander Schauffele.
Woods, with a big smile on his face, thrust both arms into the air as holed his final putt on the 18th green for a bogey. He hugged his mother, Kultida Woods, his two children, daughter Sam and son Charlie, and other well-wishers as he headed to the clubhouse to sign his scorecard.
At 43, Woods is the oldest Masters champion since Jack Nicklaus, who won the 1986 Masters at 46. The 79-year-old Nicklaus holds the record for most major golf championships with 18, with Woods now trailing the mark by three.
With Woods’ dearth of recent major championships, the Nicklaus mark appeared increasingly distant for the aging Woods. The last 11 years have marked a period of personal turmoil for Woods as he underwent several surgeries to repair back injuries that inhibited his performance or stopped him from playing at all. He also was divorced from his wife, Elin Nordegren, after a string of his highly publicized extramarital affairs.
Nicklaus tweeted his congratulations to Woods, saying, “A big ‘well done’ from me to @TigerWoods! I am so happy for him and for the game of golf. This is just fantastic!!!”
U.S. President Donald Trump, himself an avid golfer who has occasionally played with Woods, said on Twitter, “Congratulations to @TigerWoods., a truly Great Champion!”