Woods says he'll be ready for the Masters
March 15, 2012 -- Updated 1813 GMT (0213 HKT)
Tiger Woods has told U.S. television that he expects to play at this year's Masters despite recently straining his Achilles tendon.
- Tiger Woods says he will play at next month's Masters at Augusta National
- Fourteen-time major champion pulled out of PGA Tour event at weekend with Achilles strain
- Italian Matteo Manassero makes the early running at the Andalucia Open in Spain with course record 64
(CNN) -- Tiger Woods says he expects to play at the Masters next month despite pulling out of the final round of the WGC-Cadillac Championship last weekend with an Achilles tendon strain.
Speaking to ABC's Good Morning America on Thursday, the 14-time major winner said: "I'll be there, don't worry about it."
"I took a few days off. I will start hitting balls tomorrow. The stiffness is gone," the 36-year-old said.
Woods is aiming to play at the PGA Tour's Arnold Palmer Invitational in Bay Hill, Florida which starts next week as a final warm-up for the Masters -- the first major of the year -- which begins on April 5.
I took a few days off. I will start hitting balls tomorrow. The stiffness is gone
Earlier this week, Woods revealed via Twitter that the injury wasn't as bad as first feared.
Masters first-timers should arrive early
"Got good news from doc (sic) tonight. Only mild strain of left Achilles. Can resume hitting balls late in week and hopeful for next week," Woods wrote Tuesday.
Tiger Woods withdraws from event
Woods suffered a similar injury at last year's Masters -- hosted annually by Augusta National Golf Club, Georgia -- which eventually kept him out of action for over four months.
Woods, a four-time Masters champion, hasn't won a major championship since his triumph at the U.S. Open in 2008.
Meanwhile in the opening round of the Andalucia Open in Spain, Eighteen-year-old Matteo Manassero boosted his chances of playing in the first major of the year as he shot a course record 64 on Thursday.
The Italian fired nine birdies and a bogey to finish on eight-under par, three shots ahead a clutch of players on five-under including Sweden's Niclas Fasth, England's Anthony Wall and Spain's Eduardo De La Riva.
Manassero claimed the first of his two European Tour titles in Spain in 2010 winning the Castello Masters in Castellon.
"This is quite similar to Castellon - a little bit more hilly maybe," Manassero said, European Tour reported.
"You need to put the ball in play and then do well around the greens. It's a course that suits me pretty well," he added.
The teenager, who beat current world No.1 Rory McIlroy at the Malaysian Open last year, is currently 63rd in golf's world rankings and needs to climb into the top 50 to guarantee an invite to Augusta National next month.
Manassero's only appearance at the Masters two years ago saw him finish a highly creditable 36th.
Today's five most popular stories
Part of complete coverage on
November 12, 2014 -- Updated 1129 GMT (1929 HKT)
"Sleep, as far as mental and physical recovery goes, has never been more important ..." says sport sleep coach Nick Littlehales.
November 4, 2014 -- Updated 1024 GMT (1824 HKT)
Joe Miller is devouring his second steak of the day and the clock has barely nudged 2pm. You need lots of fuel to smash a drive 474 yards.
October 13, 2014 -- Updated 1449 GMT (2249 HKT)
There have been many dark days for Oliver Wilson, but golf's unluckiest loser is finally riding an upward swing of his career roller coaster.
October 7, 2014 -- Updated 1648 GMT (0048 HKT)
They dress like it's the 1930s and they swing antique equipment that eschews cutting-edge technology -- this is hickory golf.
September 15, 2014 -- Updated 1609 GMT (0009 HKT)
CNN's Living Golf focuses on women's golf, charting the growth of the sport from royal pastime to multi-million dollar machine.
October 1, 2014 -- Updated 0846 GMT (1646 HKT)
"I don't know how to paint happy," says golf's poster girl Michelle Wie. "I think it releases a lot of the darker feelings in me."
September 29, 2014 -- Updated 1213 GMT (2013 HKT)
If you're a U.S. golf fan, or Tom Watson, look away now.
September 25, 2014 -- Updated 2318 GMT (0718 HKT)
A ban on uploading social media pictures from the course at Gleneagles was dropped for the Ryder Cup.
September 24, 2014 -- Updated 1052 GMT (1852 HKT)
A spot of shopping, the odd spa day and some serious flag waving. Welcome to the life of a Ryder Cup WAG.
September 23, 2014 -- Updated 1301 GMT (2101 HKT)
Tom Watson has learned plenty in the 21 years since he was last U.S. Ryder Cup captain, but social media is proving to be problematic.
September 22, 2014 -- Updated 1243 GMT (2043 HKT)
Patriotism will reach fever pitch when the USA and Europe collide in golf's Ryder Cup ... and it looks like Rickie Fowler has let it go to his head.
September 22, 2014 -- Updated 1342 GMT (2142 HKT)
Pressure is inescapable in the cauldron of Ryder Cup competition -- pressure and ping pong.
September 23, 2014 -- Updated 1150 GMT (1950 HKT)
Millions of golf fans were watching on television with great anticipation. All Martin Kaymer could think about was getting his phone out.