'Woods Is The Most Prominent Global Sportsman Since Ali' - Faldo

Sir Nick has the highest praise for Tiger as he's inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame

Nick Faldo hands Tiger Woods the Green Jacket at the 1997 Masters at Augusta
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Sir Nick Faldo is the latest player to congratulate Tiger Woods on his induction into the World Golf Hall of Fame, and compared his achievements to boxing great Muhammad Ali.

Faldo used Twitter to offer his words of appreciation to Woods, saying: “Congratulations on your Hall of Fame induction, @TigerWoods. You’ve been the most prominent professional in the history of our game. In fact, what you’ve done and achieved possibly makes you the most prominent global sportsman since Ali. Congrats again. Enjoy your night."

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Faldo was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1998 when Woods’ professional career was in its infancy. The Englishman had won the last of his six Majors by that point, but the world had already caught a glimpse of the enormous talent Woods possessed with his scintillating win at The Masters the year earlier. Indeed, it was 1996 Masters winner Faldo who had the honour of handing Woods the Green Jacket. Woods has since won another 14 Majors, changing the game beyond recognition in the process, and others have been quick to offer their congratulations, too.

Fred Couples, who was inducted in 2013, also used Twitter to offer his congratulations, describing Woods as “the best I’ve ever seen.” Meanwhile, ahead of the Players Championship, Rory McIlroy revealed that Woods was his inspiration and hero. In a sentiment that echoes Faldo’s comparison of Woods to Ali, McIlroy spoke of the barriers Woods has helped remove. He explained: “Tiger's left more of a mark on this game, I think, than anyone else basically in the history. I think the fact that he is a person of colour and what that brings to the table in terms of golf being a more acceptable sport to play if you're from a certain ethnic background.”

Nowadays, 64-year old Faldo is a TV golf commentator and course designer, and while his competitive playing days are behind him, he’s clearly appreciative of the impact Woods has had on the game, and delighted to welcome him as a fellow inductee.  

Mike Hall
Mike Hall

Mike has 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on sports such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the sport’s most newsworthy stories. Originally from East Yorkshire, Mike now resides in Canada, where the nearest course is less than a mile from his home. It’s there where he remains confident that, one of these days, he’ll play the 17th without finding the water. Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.