A resurgent Tiger Woods put bouts of injury and personal upheaval behind him by winning his first title in five years last Sunday.
The golfer, set to turn 43 in December, showed he is still a force to be reckoned with in the sport and that he was ready to silence those who said his best days were behind him.
Oh, but what days they were: from a tottering toddler who went on U.S. national TV to show his precocious skills, Woods has enjoyed phenomenal success that has included 14 Majors.
His win in Atlanta fanned speculation that he could surpass Jack Nicklaus’ all-time record of 18 Majors, with none other than the Golden Bear himself stating that Woods could achieve the feat if he remains fit and ignores distractions to remain focused on his game.
Inevitably, Woods’ spectacular fall from grace, and now his return to the top of the game, has ignited a debate over whether he is the greatest of all time, popularly known as the GOAT.
So, with a whopping haul of 80 titles from 239 PGA Tour events, can Tiger Woods rightfully lay claim to the esteemed title?
GiveMeSport put it to the fans with a poll on Facebook, with more than 30,600 sports lovers giving their two cents.
It all added up to 56 percent of respondents answering in the negative.
Many of the hundreds of comments pointed to others who could be considered GOATs in their own right, from Muhammad Ali, Roger Federer, Nadia Comaneci, Usain Bolt, Michael Phelps, Michael Schumacher, Michael Jordan and Lionel Messi earning frequent mentions.
One acknowledged that Woods could be considered one of the greats of golf, although at least one poster declared that Nicklaus was still superior for his achievements.
The poll also pointed to the difficulty of anointing one GOAT for all sports, with each requiring their own strengths and challenges.
For example, one poster singled out Pakistan’s squash great Jahangir Khan, who was unbeaten in championship play for five years; how does that compare to Rafael Nadal’s amazing clay-court record in tennis?
There is also the generational issue of sportspeople who were, in their times, considered the greatest, and how to compare them to today’s champions, many in sports with improved equipment, training techniques and regulations.
Who knows what Tiger Woods may achieve in the future, and there is no denying that he could achieve further glory with his immense talent.