World number one Tiger Woods has confirmed he will make his return to competitive golf at The Masters next month.
In a statement to the media on Tuesday, Woods revealed that he intends to end his self-imposed four-month break from the game and play at Augusta National.
There had been widespread recent speculation that he would chose to return at next week's Tavistock Cup, or the Arnold Palmer Invitational a few days later.
However, the 34-year-old insisted he would not be sufficiently prepared for those events and has now opted to rejoin the professional ranks at Augusta.
"The major championships have always been a special focus in my career and, as a professional, I think Augusta is where I need to be, even though it's been a while since I last played," read his statement.
"I have undergone almost two months of inpatient therapy and I am continuing my treatment. Although I'm returning to competition, I still have a lot of work to do in my personal life.
"When I finally got into a position to think about competitive golf again, it became apparent to me that the Masters would be the earliest I could play.
"I called both Joe Lewis and Arnold Palmer and expressed my regrets for not attending the Tavistock Cup and the Arnold Palmer Invitational.
"Support and understanding"
"I again want to thank them both for their support and their understanding. Those are fantastic tournaments and I look forward to competing in them again.
"I would also like to thank the Augusta National members and staff for their support. I have deep appreciation for everything that they do to create a wonderful event for the benefit of the game."
Woods last played on November 15 when he won the Australian Masters.
Less than two weeks later he crashed his car outside his Florida home, sparking off a media storm that culminated in him admitting to numerous extra-marital affairs.
Augusta National chairman Billy Payne said in a separate statement: "We support Tiger's decision to return to competitive golf beginning at this year's Masters tournament.
"Additionally, we support and encourage his stated commitment to continue the significant work required to rebuild his personal and professional life."
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