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Golf 2023: Tiger Woods’ next level trash talk tampon prank on Justin Thomas leaves golf in hysterics, Tiger Woods return

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Tiger Woods’ return to professional golf has raised eyebrows after he slipped a tampon into one of his rival’s hand.

Woods’ return at the $20 million Genesis Open saw Woods cart a two-under to sit five strokes off the lead in a tie for 27th.

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But the 47-year-old’s comeback after a horrific car crash in 2021, Woods said he’d never be full-time as a golfer.

Last year he played the Masters, withdrew from the PGA Championship and finished 47th at the British Open.

Woods is hope however, announcing a return after seven-months away from the sport for the Genesis Open — and he’s brought the trash talk.

Playing alongside World No. 7 Justin Thomas and World No. 2 Rory McIlroy, Woods was looking brilliant, regularly driving 320 yard and outdriving his partners on several holes.

But on hole nine, Woods had a gift for Thomas — pulling out a tampon and placing it in his opponent’s hand.

Thomas flung it away and Tiger leaded in for a hug as the pair shared a laugh but the golf world believed it was a lot more than a simple prank.

Stephen Douglas of The Big Lead wrote: “It is slightly insane that Tiger Woods, while hosting an entire tournament and playing his first competitive round in seven months, decided to carry a tampon in his bag. And then he immediately pulled it out of his bag in time for the walk down the fairway after he realised he had hit it further than Thomas. This is the most Tiger is Back moment we’ve had since he won the Masters.”

Much of the golf world was stunned that Tiger had the audacity to play this prank.

Golf influencer Paige Spiranac also hit out at any potential critics, writing: “If anyone tries to cancel Tiger over this we riot. It’s funny”.

She also teased what must be a popular idea with the bad blood between the PGA and LIV golfers.

“I need a LIV vs PGA tour Ryder cup type event just so Tiger can give Phil a tampon after out driving him,” she tweeted.

Woods birdied his last three holes to wrestle a two-under-par 69 from Riviera Country Club on Thursday and thrill fans cheering his return to PGA Tour.

The 15-time major champion hadn’t teed it up in a tour-level event since the British Open in July as the severe leg injuries he suffered in a February 2021 car accident continued to curtail his schedule.

Woods was greeted by cheers and chants of “Tiger! Tiger!” at the first tee, fans crowding for a glimpse as they would all around the classic course in Pacific Palisades west of downtown Los Angeles.

He opened with a birdie at the par-five first and after a bogey at the fourth he got back under par with a birdie at the eighth, where he landed his second shot from the fairway three feet from the pin.

Bogeys at the 10th and 12th put him one-over, but Woods turned things around — rolling in a five-foot birdie putt at the 16th and then curling in a 23-footer at the par-five 17th, where his approach had left him off the green.

He was in the fairway at 18, where his seven-foot birdie was greeted by massive cheers, Woods tipping his cap to the crowd after a round that left him five off the lead shared by former Genesis Invitational champion Max Homa and Keith Mitchell.

“I happened to actually hit some good shots finally and made a couple putts,” Woods said. “Even though I had a little mishap at 10, I was able to fight back and get it going. It was a nice finish.”

Woods said his comfort level increased as the round wore on.

“There’s nothing like come game time just the feeling of the butterflies and trying to calm all that stuff down,” he said.

Homa had eight birdies in his seven-under 64, including three in a row at his last three holes, the seventh eighth and ninth.

The American ranked 12th in the world won at Riviera in 2021 and has taken his tally of tour titles to six this season with a victory at the Fortinet Championship in September and at Torrey Pines in January.

Woods had been scheduled to compete at the unofficial Hero World Challenge in December, but pulled out because of plantar fasciitis and says he’s targeting all four majors and just a few other events this year.

Thursday was a good first step, but Woods’s ability to recover from a round and walk 72 holes remains a mystery, even to him.

“There’s a lot of ice going on here,” he said of his planned post-round treatment. “As soon as I get back to the hotel, it’s just icing and treatment and icing and treatment, just hit repeat throughout the whole night.

“Unfortunately, that’s my issue is that this leg will never be what it once was, so we have to adapt to it and my team’s been incredible.”

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