Tiger Woods emerged victorious from the Arnold Palmer Invitation at Bay Hill for the first time since September 2009. And this eagerly awaited return as certainly got the 36 year old former world number one hungry for a fifth major
Woods warmed up for the first major of the season at Augusta with a comfortable five-shot victory over Graeme McDowell in the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill Florida.
The victory for Woods takes him to 6th in the world rankings, and takes his professional win tally to 98 in all competitions.
Tiger Woods began the final day on 11 under par. He did drop a shot on the second, but recovered well to birdie the next two holes.
McDowell managed to stay within reach of Woods with a double bogey six, before producing a 45 footer on the third to take him back to 9 under par.
Graeme then applied even more pressure on Tiger at the sixth with a fantastic 50 foot finish taking Woods lead to only two. But by the eighth hole Tiger had recaptured a 4 shot lead on Northern Ireland's McDowell.
On the 11th McDowell holed from 23 feet to close the gap to 3 shots. But all that hard work was banished when the 2010 US Open Champion shot a six on the 12th, placing Tiger well and truly in the drivers seat.
Tiger Woods celebrates victory with his caddie in the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill Florida
It stayed that way until the 17th where McDowell overshot the green and bogeyed, finishing the tournament with a two over par 74.
England's Ian Poulter finished third, but unfortunately the South African Ernie Els could only manage a 75. Leaving him out of this years masters at Augusta.
Tiger Woods finished the tournament with a 2 under par 70, five shots ahead of Graeme McDowell in second.
Tiger Woods celebrating his 98th tournament victory in The Arnold Palmer Invitational 2012
But even more pleasing than the result at Bay Hill this week will be the fact that Tiger is back on the circuit doing what he does best.
A great deal has been mentioned about the private life of this golfing genius over the past few years. But with that beaming smile, and trademark red t-shirt, he's a welcoming return to a wonderful sport.