Melbourne, Jan 5 (ANI): The Victoria Government is ready to welcome Tiger Woods anytime despite the World No.1 golfer's reputation nose diving after it was revealed that he had cheated on his wife with a host of women.
Woods visit to Victoria cost Australian taxpayers 1.5 million dollars, but his appearance at the Australian Masters returned a dividend of 34 million dollars, before news of his messy personal life broke.
That's how much the event, at Melbourne's Kingston Heath, injected into the Victorian economy, Acting Premier Rob Hulls says.
Launching an economic impact report into the November event, Hulls said the economic benefit to the state was far higher than forecast, News.com.au reports.
Tourism and Major Events Minister Tim Holding said Woods would be welcome to play in this year's Masters at the Victoria Golf Club.
"We have made it clear that Tiger is welcome to come play golf any time in Victoria. He has obviously made some announcements about his golfing future - we respect that and we respect his privacy," Holding said.
Woods received an appearance fee of 3.25 million dollars, with the state government chipping in 1.5 million dollars.
Hulls said Melbourne's major hotels were almost completely booked out during the Masters and golf courses across the state reported a surge in bookings. Then there were the economic spin-offs for restaurants, taxis and the retail sector, he added.
It was expected Woods, who won the Australian Masters, would be in the US team to play in the President's Cup in Melbourne in 2011 but his immediate golfing future is in doubt as he takes time out to try and salvage his marriage.
"The question of what Tiger Woods does in the future is a matter for him, we respect that and he is always welcome to play here," Holding said. (ANI)