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QUICK TAKE: Woods ‘Very Close’ To Ryder Cup Return

Tiger hopes to be a Ryder Cup pick following his strong summer stretch. (Photo: John David Mercer, USA Today Sports)

U.S. Ryder Cup captain Jim Furyk has a 5 p.m. press conference scheduled on Tuesday, Sept. 4 in Philadelphia where he will announce three of his four captain’s picks for the September matches in France.

And yes, barring some unforeseen issue, Tiger Woods is going to be on the team as a player.

Has to be.

Needs to be.

And, most importantly, he wants to be.

“I want to be picked. I want to be part of the team,” Woods said Tuesday at Ridgewood Country Club in New Jersey where he will tee it up in the Northern Trust, the first of what he hopes will be a four-tournament run through the FedEx Cup playoffs.

Woods already is a team member as one of Furyk’s vice captains but his play this season has rocketed him up in both the world ranking points and Ryder Cup points. More than that, Woods and his game have passed the eye test.

He had a chance to win the last two major championships on Sunday and the echoes are just beginning to fade from his final-round run at the PGA Championship.

“I started at the very beginning of the year, I told Jim I wanted to be a part of the team, not just as a vice captain but as a player. I’m very close to making that happen,” Woods said.

“It’s been a long year and one that was one of my goals was to make that team, because to be part of that team, you’ve got to be one of the 12 best players and I’m kind of trending towards that.”

Woods said there have been times when he’s had to talk about himself in the third person – some athletes love to do that but it’s never been something Woods has done – when Furyk and his assistants are discussing potential roster additions.

“I’m one of the guys on the short list and sometimes I’ve got to pull myself out of there and talk about myself in the third person, which is a little odd,” Woods said.

Furyk has been coy about adding Woods to his playing roster.

“His game is trending,” Furyk said recently.

It’s still unclear if Woods will retain his vice captain’s role if he also is a player.

And at the moment, anyway, Woods is one of a handful of players including Phil Mickelson, Bryson DeChambeau, Xander Schauffele, Matt Kuchar, Kevin Kisner, Tony Finau and Zach Johnson thought to be under consideration for the remaining four spots.

“It is an ongoing conversation about trying to talk about myself and the rest of the guys and be objective about it all,” Woods said.


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