Woods, 43, told reporters ahead of the championship at Georgia's Augusta National Golf Club he's “proven” he can win. Woods has earned four Masters titles and, this year, he is confident he can get his fifth green jacket.
“I feel like I can win,” Woods told reporters, according to The Guardian. “I’ve proven that I can do it and I put myself there with the chance to win the last two major championships of the year last year, and I was right there and just needed to have a couple more things go my way and not throw away a couple of shots here and there which I was able to do at East Lake [Tour Championship].”
Woods said he felt he has “improved a lot over the past 12-14 months.”
“But more than anything I’ve just proven to myself that I can play at this level again,” he said.
It’s been 14 years since Woods has won a Masters title and 11 years since he has won a major of any kind. However, last year he came close after a victory in the Tour Championship.
Fellow pro golfer Phil Mickelson said he believed in Woods.
“I just think that greatness is still in him,” Mickelson said, according to The Washington Post.
As for Woods, he hoped to go out there this year and “get it done.”
“After I won my 14th [title], I felt I like I still had many more major championships that I could win. Unfortunately, I just didn’t do it,” Woods told reporters. “Hopefully, this year I put myself there again and, hopefully, I’ll get it done."
Mickelson cautioned naysayers that he “would never rule” Woods out.
Woods shares a prime late-morning tee time on Thursday, playing with Spain's John Rahm and China's Haotong Li -- both of whom were a year old when Woods won his first pro tournament in Las Vegas in 1996.
The Masters Tournament begins Thursday and will wrap up Sunday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.