- The Augusta Chronicle - Monday, April 7, 2014

AUGUSTA, Ga. — Mark O’Meara was a mentor to a young Tiger Woods, starting in the mid-1990s. They were regular playing partners in practice rounds at tournaments, including the Masters Tournament, and played together when at home in Florida.

He was a regular passenger on Woods’ private jet, which was sometimes called TWA — Tiger Woods Airlines.

Not anymore, O’Meara said this week at Augusta National Golf Club.

“I don’t have a whole lot of communication with him, to be honest with you,” he said. “I wish I could, I wish I did but I don’t. He’s very secretive of what’s going on.”

O’Meara didn’t even know Woods had back surgery last week — which will keep him out of the Masters this week — until after the fact.

“I had no idea until someone told me he had surgery and had withdrawn from the event,” O’Meara said. “It’s not like he tells me, ‘Hey, MO, I’m struggling, I’m this or that.’”

“I send him a text and ask him ask him how he’s doing,” O’Meara said. “Sometimes he doesn’t respond and when he does respond he says, ‘Yeah, the weather’s fine or something.’ It’s just different now, is all I can say.”

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