Credits: compleatgolfer

Scottie Scheffler wins Hero World Challenge as Tiger Woods finishes 18th

Hero World Challenge final round leaderboard
-20 Scheffler (US), -17 Straka (Aut), -16 Thomas (US), -15 Fitzpatrick (Eng), Finau (US); -14 Spieth (US); Morikawa (US)

American Scheffler’s bogey-free four-under round of 68 meant he finished on 20 under and sealed a three-shot win from Austrian Sepp Straka.

Woods, competing for the first time since withdrawing from the Masters in April, ended level after a round of 72.

The 15-time major champion expects to play “once a month” in 2024.

Former world number one Woods, 47, had ankle surgery earlier this year to address post-traumatic arthritis following the 2021 car crash that kept him out of action for nearly 14 months.

“Once a month seems reasonable,” Woods told Golf Channel of his plans for next year.

“It gives me a couple of weeks to recover and a week to tune up. Maybe I can get into the rhythm.”

Woods, who will next play the PNC Championship – formerly the Father/Son Challenge – from 14 December with his son Charlie, said he was “ecstatic” with his return.

“I feel like my game’s not that far off but I need to get in better shape,” Woods said.

“I don’t have the bone pain that I did, but I still have to go through with the same protocols. It takes a long time, that’s the unfortunate thing about ageing.”

Woods recovered from a double bogey on the third with three birdies in the next four holes and also birdied the 14th and 15th after dropping shots on the eighth and 11th.

He finished 20 shots behind compatriot Scheffler, runner-up to Viktor Hovland in each of the past two years.

Straka returned a superb 64 to finish 17 under, with Justin Thomas a shot further back in third. Hovland surged through the field with a 63 to finish 10th.

“I think this is great for momentum,” Scheffler told NBC.

“I talked a little bit about it at the beginning of the week; this was kind of a warm-up for the [next] season.”