MELBROUNE — With a few high-profile exceptions, team-play captaincies generally come and go without much fanfare. The process usually looks something like this: a past-his-prime major winner, no longer a significant factor on tour but not yet irrelevant, is tapped for the job. It’s typically a reward for a distinguished playing career. The selection spends […]
Ford Championship at Doral: Took over as World No. 1 for the first time since the week of Aug. 30, 2004 by defeating Phil Mickelson by a stroke at the Ford Championship at Doral. Paired with Mickelson in the final round for just the third time in his career, began the day two strokes behind. Caught up to Mickelson at the turn and took a two-stroke lead after an eagle on the par-5 12th hole. Mickelson birdied the next two and both bogeyed the 16th to remain tied with two holes to play. Birdied the 17th hole and when Mickelson's chip on No. 18 lipped out, earned the 42nd victory of his career.
At age 19, Woods participated in his first PGA Tour major, the 1995 Masters, and tied for 41st as the only amateur to make the cut; two years later, he would win the tournament by 12 strokes. At age 20 in 1996, he became the first golfer to win three consecutive U.S. Amateur titles[54] and won the NCAA individual golf championship.[55] In winning the silver medal as leading amateur at The Open Championship, he tied the record for an amateur aggregate score of 281.[56] He left college after two years in order to turn professional in the golf industry. In 1996, Woods moved out of California, stating in 2013 that it was due to the state's high tax rate.[57]
Woods overcame difficulties with stuttering as a boy.[48] This was not known until he wrote a letter to a boy who contemplated suicide. Woods wrote, "I know what it's like to be different and to sometimes not fit in. I also stuttered as a child and I would talk to my dog and he would sit there and listen until he fell asleep. I also took a class for two years to help me, and I finally learned to stop."[49]
On December 2, following Us Weekly's previous day reporting of a purported mistress and subsequent release of a voicemail message allegedly left by Woods for the woman,[216] Woods released a further statement. He admitted transgressions and apologized to "all of those who have supported [him] over the years", while reiterating his and his family's right to privacy.[211][217] Over the next few days, more than a dozen women claimed in various media outlets to have had affairs with Woods.[6] On December 11, he released a third statement admitting to infidelity and he apologized again. He also announced that he would be taking "an indefinite break from professional golf."[6]
The foundation benefits from the annual Chevron World Challenge and AT&T National golf tournaments hosted by Woods.[191] In October 2011, the foundation hosted the first Tiger Woods Invitational at Pebble Beach.[194] Other annual fundraisers have included the concert events Block Party, last held in 2009 in Anaheim, and Tiger Jam, last held in 2011 in Las Vegas after a one-year hiatus.[191][195]
Won seven times en route to capturing the inaugural FedExCup, cruising through the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup with two wins and a T2 in three starts. Captured 13th career major championship (second all-time to Jack Nicklaus' 18) and finished the year with 61 official PGA TOUR victories, fifth all-time. Adjusted scoring average was 67.79, matching own record set in 2000. With 60 official rounds, won his seventh career Vardon Trophy and also captured the Byron Nelson Award.
Hero World Challenge: Hero World Challenge host finished T9 and 10 strokes behind champion Rickie Fowler. Marked his first appearance in competition since withdrawing from the Omega Dubai Desert Classic on February 2, 2017. Week included playing in the first and final round with reigning FedExCup champion and PGA TOUR Player of the Year Justin Thomas, with both players posting scores of 69-68 in those rounds.
THE PLAYERS Championship: In his next start, claimed on Mother's Day his second PLAYERS Championship victory after opening with a pair of 5-under 67s. He had previously not had back-to-back rounds in the 60s at THE PLAYERS since the second and third rounds in 2004 (T16). The only other time he accomplished the feat was in 2001 (second, third and fourth rounds), when he won. With his win, joined Jack Nicklaus, Steve Elkington, Hal Sutton, Fred Couples and Davis Love III as multiple winners of the event. The victory at TPC Sawgrass became his fourth of the campaign, the earliest he has achieved the feat in a season. The win was also his 16th in Florida, the most of any state. Converted the 54-hole lead for the 53rd time (in 57 attempts).

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Woods had a poor showing at the 2013 U.S. Open as a result of an elbow injury that he sustained at The Players Championship. In finishing at 13-over-par, he recorded his worst score as a professional and finished 12 strokes behind winner Justin Rose. After a prolonged break because of the injury, during which he missed the Greenbrier Classic and his own AT&T National, he returned at the Open Championship at Muirfield. Despite being in contention all week and beginning the final round only two strokes behind Lee Westwood, he struggled with the speed of the greens and could only manage a 3-over-par 74 that left him tied for 6th place, five strokes behind eventual winner Phil Mickelson. Two weeks later, Woods returned to form at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, recording his 5th win of the season and 8th win at the event in its 15-year history. His second round 61 matched his record score on the PGA Tour and could easily have been a 59 were it not for some short missed birdie putts on the closing holes. This gave him a seven-stroke lead that he held onto for the rest of the tournament. Woods would never contend at the PGA Championship at Oak Hill Country Club and would come short of winning a major for the 5th full season, only contending in two of the four majors in 2013.
In 2011, Woods' performance continued to suffer; this took its toll on his ranking. After falling to No. 7 in March, he rebounded to No. 5 with a strong showing at the 2011 Masters, where he tied for fourth place.[87] Due to leg injuries incurred at the Masters, he missed several summer stops on the PGA Tour. In July, he fired his longtime caddy Steve Williams (who was shocked by the dismissal), and replaced him on an interim basis with friend Bryon Bell until he hired Joe LaCava.[88] After returning to tournament play in August, Woods continued to falter, and his ranking gradually fell to a low of #58.[8] He rose to No. 50 in mid-November after a third-place finish at the Emirates Australian Open, and broke his winless streak with a victory at December's Chevron World Challenge.[8][89]
Buick Open: Shot a final-round 69 and coasted to a three-shot victory with a 20-under 268 at the Buick Open for the 69th PGA TOUR title of his career. Improved to 36-1 when he had the outright lead after 54 holes. The win was his fourth of the season in just 11 starts since returning from knee surgery and the 69th of his career. He also claimed 500 FedExCup points and moved to the top of the standings. Reached victory No. 69 at the age of 33 years and seven months–almost seven years faster than Jack Nicklaus and eight years sooner than Sam Snead. Shot a 71 in the first round and came back with the best five-hole start of his career–beginning 6-under in the second round–en route to a 9-under 63 for his best score in relation to par in four years. Shot a 65 in the third round and held a one-shot lead going into Sunday.
The Open Championship: Finished T6 at the 147 Open Championship at Carnoustie, his first top-10 in a major since at T6 at the 2013 Open Championship. Week was highlighted by a third-round 66, his lowest round in a major since a 66 in the second round of the 2011 Masters. Was just his second made cut (2018 Masters Tournament/T32) in his last six major starts. Posted rounds of 71-71-66-71, the first time since the 2010 Masters Tournament (T4) he recorded four par-or-better rounds in a major. Paired with eventual-champion Francesco Molinari, entered the final round four shots off the lead. Took the solo-lead at 7-under after nine holes, one ahead of Molinari and Jordan Spieth, but his lead disappeared with a double bogey at No. 11. Bogeyed No. 12 and birdied No. 14 before closing with four pars to finish at 5-under. The finish moved him to No. 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking, returning to the top 50 for the first time since January 2015. The ranking also earned him a spot in the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational.
During the first decade of his professional career, Woods was the world's most marketable athlete.[134] Shortly after his 21st birthday in 1996, he signed endorsement deals with numerous companies, including General Motors, Titleist, General Mills, American Express, Accenture, and Nike, Inc. In 2000, he signed a 5-year, $105 million contract extension with Nike, which was the largest endorsement package signed by a professional athlete at that time.[135] Woods' endorsement has been credited with playing a significant role in taking the Nike Golf brand from a "start-up" golf company earlier in the previous decade to becoming the leading golf apparel company in the world and a major player in the equipment and golf ball market.[134][136] Nike Golf is one of the fastest growing brands in the sport, with an estimated $600 million in sales.[137] Woods has been described as the "ultimate endorser" for Nike Golf,[137] frequently seen wearing Nike gear during tournaments, and even in advertisements for other products.[135] Woods receives a percentage from the sales of Nike Golf apparel, footwear, golf equipment, golf balls,[134] and has a building named after him at Nike's headquarters campus in Beaverton, Oregon.[138]
World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship: Captured second consecutive World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship for 40th career PGA TOUR win. With six match victories, including a 3-and-2 win over Davis Love III in the 36-hole finale, has won 12 consecutive matches, and overall Accenture Match Play Championship record is 20-3.
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The TGR Foundation was established in 1996 by Woods and his father Earl as the Tiger Woods Foundation, with the primary goal of promoting golf among inner-city children.[188] The foundation has conducted junior golf clinics across the country, and sponsors the Tiger Woods Foundation National Junior Golf Team in the Junior World Golf Championships.[189][190] As of December 2010, TWF employed approximately 55 people.[191][192]
World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational: Benefactor of a big change in momentum on Firestone CC's famous 16th hole in winning for the 70th time in his career with the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational victory. Trailing by one stroke, hit an 8-iron from 178 yards to within tap-in range for a birdie on the long par-5 16th. Meanwhile, Padraig Harrington, the third-round leader, hit from the collar of a bunker over the 16th green, but his delicate flop shot from behind the green came out hot, went into the water and he made a triple bogey-8 to give up the lead. Closed with consecutive 5-under 65s to reach 12-under and win by four strokes over Harrington and Robert Allenby. Became the first player in TOUR history to win the same event seven times on the same golf course. Also picked up 550 FedExCup points and extended his lead to 946 points. Joined Sam Snead (82) and Jack Nicklaus (73) as the only players to win 70 career TOUR events, but did so nearly seven years younger than Snead or Nicklaus.
Difficult season off the course, as he suffered the loss of father Earl after a long battle with cancer on May 3. Inside the ropes, World No. 1 dominated with eight victories, including two major titles (The Open Championship and PGA Championship). Entered the 2007 season with a TOUR streak of six consecutive victories. Led the TOUR in scoring average (68.11) but not eligible for seventh Vardon Trophy as he did not play 60 competitive rounds. Won Byron Nelson Award for low scoring average.
On March 18, 2013, Woods announced that he and Olympic gold medal skier Lindsey Vonn were dating.[237] They split up in May 2015.[238] From November 2016 to August 2017, Woods was in a relationship with stylist Kristin Smith.[citation needed] Woods announced in November 2017 that he was in a relationship with restaurant manager Erica Herman, following speculation about their relationship that began the month prior.[citation needed]

The next decade of Woods' career was marked by comebacks from personal problems and injuries. He took a self-imposed hiatus from professional golf from December 2009 to early April 2010 in an attempt to resolve marital issues with his then-wife, Elin. Extramarital affairs with Woods had been alleged by several women, and the couple eventually divorced.[6] Woods fell to number 58 in the world rankings in November 2011 before ascending again to the No.1 ranking between March 2013 and May 2014.[7][8] However, injuries led him to undergo four back surgeries between 2014 and 2017.[9] Woods competed in only one tournament between August 2015 and January 2018, and he dropped off the list of the world's top 1,000 golfers.[10][11] On his return to regular competition, Woods made steady progress to the top of the game, winning his first tournament in five years at the Tour Championship in September 2018 and his first major in 11 years at the 2019 Masters.

Chevron World Challenge: Lost in a playoff to Graeme McDowell at the Chevron World Challenge. It was the first time as a professional that he lost after holding a three-shot-or-more lead entering the final round. McDowell drained a 20 foot putt on the 72nd hole to force a playoff and then made a 25 foot putt on the first playoff hole (No. 18) to capture the win. The world's No. 2-ranked player missed a 14-foot putt that would have extended the playoff. He has finished in the top two at this event in eight of his 10 starts.

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