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Page last updated at 09:48 GMT, Tuesday, 1 July 2008 10:48 UK

Woods makes fitness comeback vow

Tiger Woods
Woods played through the pain to win the US Open at Torrey Pines

Tiger Woods says he will be in his best shape for years when he returns to action after undergoing reconstructive surgery on his left knee.

Woods is out for the rest of the year after the operation, which followed his remarkable play-off win at the US Open.

"The doctors say my long-term health will be a lot better than it's been over the past decade," he said.

"I'm really looking forward to that, and not having pain after I'm playing and while I'm playing."

They took a tendon out of my right hamstring and implemented it into my left knee and made it to my new Anterior Cruciate Ligament

Tiger Woods

The world number one underwent his fourth operation on his left knee two days after beating Rocco Mediate at Torrey Pines to secure his 14th major title.

Dr Thomas Rosenberg, one of the two surgeons who operated on the 31-year-old, said there were "no surprises" during the procedure and it was "highly unlikely" Woods's career would suffer any long-term effects.

"They took a graft, basically a tendon out of my right hamstring, and implemented it into my left knee and made it to my new anterior cruciate ligament and they fixed a little bit of cartilage damage I had in there, and that was about it," said Woods.

He had already undergone an arthroscopic procedure in April to clean out cartilage in his left knee, which he hoped would allow him to complete the 2008 season.

606: DEBATE

But now he is on crutches with his leg in a brace, and will miss the rest of the campaign, including the Open and the Ryder Cup in September.

In addition to taking time out to recover from his surgery, Woods also requires time off to recover from a double stress fracture of his left tibia that was discovered last month.

"As of right now, I'm in a brace, a straight leg brace," he said.

"Letting everything kind of calm down and quiet down for three weeks post-op.

"Then from there I can start some weight bearing and then gradually start putting a little bit of weight on this thing and flexing it.

"Being laid up here and watching the season on TV is really no fun. But those are the cards right now, and I just have to deal with it."




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