‘He’s our hero out here’: Players react to Tiger crash
The world's best golfers were shocked as news spread at the Workday Championship in Florida that Tiger Woods had been in a serious car accident.
Justin Thomas, a close friend of Woods', who plays with his kids, said he was "sick to his stomach" as players were informed what had happened.
He was only told while he was in a press conference, and was close to tears.
"You know, it hurts to see one of your - now one of my closest friends get in an accident. Man, I just hope he's all right. Just worry for his kids, you know. I'm sure they're struggling," Thomas said.
Word began filtering through that Woods was responsive and in surgery for non life-threatening injuries to his legs.
Aussie Adam Scott said Woods was "our hero out here".
"You think guys like Tiger and Kobe Bryant are untouchable, but they're not. I just hope he's all right," Scott told PGAtour.com
But Tony Finau, who played with Woods in the 2019 Presidents Cup, was reeling.
"I saw the condition of his car. To me, you just hope that he's okay, that's the biggest reaction really. A little bit shocked," he said.
"You know, something crazy happened to our sports world last year with Kobe, so I wouldn't say that dramatic of feelings, but man, you just hope Tiger's all right.
"We all know he's a strong cookie physically, mentally, so if someone's going to get through this, he will and be back for the better, I'm sure.
"My thoughts and prayers I'm sure as all the players, I can speak on their behalf, are with Tiger."
US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau said he felt "terrible".
"A bit shocked, obviously. You don't expect anything like that to happen," he said.
"But from everything that I know about Tiger, I'm sure he'll recover and he'll do everything in his power to come back, I'm sure he will.
"It's something that I feel terrible about for him.
"He's got some things going on obviously with his legs and stuff, broken.
"But I will say that whatever's happened, he's always come back from it in a pretty amazing way.
"He's an amazing human being that has done incredible things.
"I mean, you look back to Ben Hogan and what happened with him in the bus crash, right, and what he was able do after that. I have no doubt in my mind he'll be back.
"From my perspective he's one of the most impressive human beings I've ever met and I think that he'll come back just fine."
Golfing greats, including Greg Norman and Ernie Els, also reacted to the news.
Norman said Woods' "mental strength" would help him get through.
Jack Nicklaus said he was "deeply concerned".
"We want to offer him our heartfelt support and prayers at this difficult time. Please join us in wishing Tiger a successful surgery and all the best for a full recovery," he said.
He has mental strength stronger than most and has fought many battles and won many of them. His mental strength will win this battle. Prayers and thoughts to @TigerWoods and his family.— Greg Norman (@SharkGregNorman) February 23, 2021
Woods has won five Masters titles and Augusta National chairman Fred Ridley joined in the chorus of wishers.
"Tiger Woods is part of the Augusta National family, and the news of his accident is upsetting to all of us," Ridley said.
"We pray for him, for his full recovery and for his family during this difficult time."
World number two Jon Rahm said as if Woods "hadn't been through enough" in a career that most recently has included five back operations.
"Just hoping out of a bad situation, the best possible outcome and I hope he can recover from it and we can see him on the golf course as early as possible," he said.
"It's sad to see. He was a great ambassador of the game and looked like he was trying to start to turn his life around and maybe looking forward to the future, to retirement, spending some great time with his son Charlie.
"Just hope he can get out of the hospital after recovery and he can still play with his kids and have a normal life."
Sick to my stomach right now. Praying for @TigerWoods and hoping for an amazing recovery. Thinking about his entire family and team, as all of us are sending our best wishes. We know TW is a fighter. Get well soon 🐅!!!— Justin Thomas (@JustinThomas34) February 23, 2021
We are all pulling for you, Tiger. We are so sorry that you and your family are going through this tough time. Everyone hopes and prays for your full and speedy recovery.— Phil Mickelson (@PhilMickelson) February 23, 2021
.@TigerWoods was my idol growing up and I’ve been so fortunate to have been teammates and friends with him. Right now all of my thoughts are with him and his family for a speedy recovery 🙏🏻— Patrick Reed (@PReedGolf) February 23, 2021
Prayers are with @TigerWoods for a fast and full recovery 🙏🙏— Sergio Garcia (@TheSergioGarcia) February 23, 2021
Originally published as 'He's our hero out here': Players react to Tiger crash
Really troubling to see the accident this morning involving @TigerWoods. We’ve been friends a very long time, obviously I’m concerned for his wellbeing. He’s always been a fighter and I hope he fully recovers very soon.— Ernie Els (@TheBig_Easy) February 23, 2021