Confident Tiger Woods Pleased with Progress, Ready to Win Again

David KindervaterCorrespondent IOctober 5, 2011

Tiger Woods
Tiger WoodsRobert Laberge/Getty Images

If you're buying what Tiger Woods is selling, there's plenty of reason to believe the PGA Tour's most popular player will return to the form that has, thus far, earned him 14 major championship victories.

Woods is back in action this week at the Open at CordeValle in San Martin, Calif., a tournament he's never participated in before, and it's the first competitive golf he will have played since his dismal showing at the PGA Championship back in August.

As the world has waited for Woods to not only return to the PGA Tour on a regular basis but also provide some of the excitement and fire he used to display on the golf course, there have been a myriad of excuses as to why he hasn't fared well.

Swing changes. Health issues. Lack of practice time.

One problem led to another and a seemingly endless comeback effort has created a vicious circle that has been surrounding Woods since the last time he won a golf tournament—the WGC Bridgestone Invitational in 1999.

His measurement of success this week? Nothing less than a win will do.

Woods shot "a bunch of 66s and 65s" recently, and even a round of 62 last week. During his pre-tournament presser Wednesday, he exuded plenty of confidence in his progress since an early exit at the PGA Championship:

"I'm happy with how everything has progressed from tee to green," he said. "You know, I've had a chance to practice and work on everything—which has been good—which is something that I hadn't been able to do for a while. So I have to say I'm very pleased with every facet of my game."

Those are some pretty encouraging words from someone who has, for all intents and purposes, been written off by the majority of the mainstream media—and his professional peers—for the past two years.

If he can back the verbal swagger with some solid play this week—and maybe even a win—it will be hard to argue with the notion that Woods has indeed "turned the corner" in his comeback effort.