But at the PNC Championship, onlookers were seeing double. For the final round of the annual event in Orlando, Tiger and son Charlie teed off in perfect symmetry.
At 13-years-old, his father has won two more majors than he has had birthdays, but Charlie impressed throughout at Ritz-Carlton Golf Club, his tee approach and swing drawing inevitable, yet eerily accurate, comparisons to that of his playing partner.
The pair finished tied for eighth in a star-studded 20-player field, with only players to have won a major championship or The Players Championship invited to play with their relatives. After finishing as runners-up last year, the Woods’s finished six shots behind Fiji’s three-time major champion Vijay Singh and his son Qass Singh.
Beyond matching outfits, the duo also coordinated in playing through pain. Woods, featuring in just his second event since his emotional St. Andrews outing at The Open in July, was managing plantar fasciitis, pain in the bottom of his foot, while Charlie admitted to struggling with an ankle injury sustained by rolling it during a practice round.
Injury has been the story of Woods’ recent career, his playing time decimated since he suffered serious leg injuries in a car accident in February 2021. The 46-year-old withdrew from the Hero World Challenge earlier this month citing his foot pain, and at various points had looked to be struggling with movement during the seventh edition of The Match last week.
“It was a tough year but also one of the more rewarding years I’ve had in a while,” Woods told reporters Sunday.
“I don’t know if I ever get back to playing St Andrews in a British Open, but to be able to experience that maybe one last time at this level was very special to me.”
Sharing a golf cart to get around the course, both father and son could be seen limping at times over the weekend. Yet with two good feet between them, Woods believes he and his son were “perfect yin and yang”.
“He’s got a left foot, I’ve got a right foot and so we’ve got two good feet – we’re good,” Woods told SiriusXM PGA Tour Radio on Saturday.
“There’s a big difference between pain and injury … If you’re injured you’re not playing, this is just a little bit of pain and it’s game time – so we just go out there and suck it up together.”
Charlie added: “I’ve found a new respect for him now, after getting a very minor injury.
“Just to see what he’s going through, just a fraction of it, and see how much it hurts. It’s cool how he’s gotten to where he is now after all he’s been through.”
After a day of friendly back-and-forth with Justin Thomas and his father Mike, who finished joint-second, Charlie had a back-handed compliment saved for his father.
“I feel like I already knew what he was capable of and then yesterday, that’s the best he’s ever played in a while, and that kind of shocked me a little bit,” he told reporters.
The laughter in the press room subsided only to spark up again with Woods’ reply.
“I used to be good,” he said.
“It was neat to be able to roll back the clock for him to see what I used to be capable of.”