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Sir Nick Faldo says golf can be Tiger Woods' 'saviour'

Tiger Woods (left) and Nick Faldo
Faldo (right, with Woods) has first-hand experience of tabloid scrutiny

Six-time major winner Sir Nick Faldo says returning to tournament golf will prove Tiger Woods' "saviour".

Woods, 34, who has won 14 majors, has not appeared in public since crashing his car last November and consequently admitting to "infidelity".

"He needs to get back on the course and start playing because that will be his saviour," Faldo told BBC Sport.

"I'd have thought he'd be dying to get back, I don't believe he'll give up the opportunity to play in the majors."

British golf great Faldo was knighted for his services to the sport last year after a glittering 30-year career.

Married three times, his own private life was splashed across the front pages of many newspapers in the mid-1990s when he split from his second wife.

Now a regular golf analyst on US television, Faldo added that Woods' "whole world has changed".

There's still two months until the Masters and I would have thought that would be a good place to sneak in early

Sir Nick Faldo on Tiger Woods

He said: "His world used to start at the parking lot, the cameras would pick him up there, he'd have a round of golf and he'd say goodbye to the cameras when he left the parking lot.

"Now it's going to be 24/7, 100% scrutiny. I'm sure he's trying to prepare for that the best he can."

Faldo, who won three Open Championships and three Masters in a glittering career, said the latter tournament in April would be the ideal place to make a comeback.

"There's still two months until the Masters and I would have thought that would be a good place to sneak in early," said Faldo.

"He could have a week's preparation away from everybody, and obviously Augusta is the most secure event and he'd have a relatively free run."

Faldo is the latest golfer to entreat Woods to return to the game.

World number two Phil Mickelson has urged Woods to come back to the PGA Tour, saying "the game of golf needs him".

US golf legend Jack Nicklaus said Woods would find it harder to break his record of 18 majors if he does not compete this year, while on Wednesday five-time Open champion Tom Watson urged Woods to "show some humility" when he does finally choose to return.

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see also
Woods must show humility - Watson
03 Feb 10 |  Golf
Mickelson keen for Woods return
28 Jan 10 |  Golf
Federer predicts Woods comeback
16 Jan 10 |  Golf
Nicklaus warning for absent Woods
10 Jan 10 |  Golf
Woods wins PGA Tour player award
19 Dec 09 |  Golf
Tag Heuer 'to drop Woods image'
18 Dec 09 |  Americas
Woods named Athlete of the Decade
18 Dec 09 |  Golf
PGA bullish despite Woods absence
17 Dec 09 |  Golf
Woods loses key sponsorship deal
14 Dec 09 |  Americas
I knew nothing - Woods's caddie
13 Dec 09 |  Golf
Tiger Woods takes break from golf
12 Dec 09 |  Americas
Woods admits letting family down
02 Dec 09 |  Americas
Golfer Woods hurt in US car crash
28 Nov 09 |  Golf
Elated Faldo receives knighthood
10 Nov 09 |  Golf

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