Woods continued to excel in 2007 and the first part of 2008. In April 2008, he underwent knee surgery and missed the next two months on the tour. Woods returned for the 2008 U.S. Open, where he struggled the first day but ultimately claimed a dramatic sudden death victory over Rocco Mediate that followed an 18-hole playoff, after which Mediate said, "This guy does things that are just not normal by any stretch of the imagination," and Kenny Perry added, "He beat everybody on one leg." Two days later, Woods announced that he would miss the remainder of the season due to additional knee surgery, and that his knee was more severely damaged than previously revealed, prompting even greater praise for his U.S. Open performance. Woods called it "my greatest ever championship." In Woods' absence, TV ratings for the remainder of the season suffered a huge decline from 2007.
The Barclays: Finished T2 at The Barclays in the first event of the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup. Missed a seven-foot birdie try on the final green that would have tied for the lead. Finished at 8-under par with Steve Stricker, Ernie Els and Padraig Harrington, one stroke behind winner Heath Slocum, who sank a 21-foot par putt on the final hole to win the title. The start was his 250th on the PGA TOUR, and for the first time in his professional career in a stroke-play event, he played with the same player (Zach Johnson) all four rounds.
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.
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U.S. Open Championship: Posted a 5-under 66 during the third round of the U.S. Open to enter the final round five strokes behind tournament leader Dustin Johnson. Went on to card a 4-under 75 Sunday to finish T4 (his eighth top-10 at the U.S. Open and 34th top 10 in a major championship). It was the second-highest, final-round score in a major championship as a professional (76 at the 2004 U.S. Open; 75s at the 2009 PGA Championship, 2003 Masters, 1999 Masters and 1997 PGA Championship).
In October 2007, Gatorade announced that Woods would have his own brand of sports drink starting in March 2008. "Gatorade Tiger" was his first U.S. deal with a beverage company and his first licensing agreement. Although no figures were officially disclosed, Golfweek magazine reported that it was for five years and could pay him as much as $100 million. The company decided in early fall 2009 to discontinue the drink due to weak sales.
On March 18, 2013, Woods announced that he and Olympic gold medal skier Lindsey Vonn were dating. They split up in May 2015. From November 2016 to August 2017, Woods was in a relationship with stylist Kristin Smith. 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.
On April 14, 2019, Woods won the Masters, which was his first major championship win in eleven years and his 15th major overall. He finished 13 under par to win by one stroke over Dustin Johnson, Xander Schauffele and Brooks Koepka. At age 43, he became the second oldest golfer ever to win the Masters, after Jack Nicklaus who was 46 when he triumphed in 1986. In August 2019, Woods announced via social media that he underwent a knee surgery to repair minor cartilage damage and that he had an arthroscopic procedure during the Tour Championship. In his statement, Woods also confirmed that he was walking and intends on traveling and playing in Japan in October.
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Progress! My handicap has come down from 11 (11.0) to 9 (9.2) in August 2017 across a run of three competition rounds out of four. Back in December 20... 16 I used the fault fixer to help improve ball-striking of my irons. MeAndMyGolf provided me with some videos to help with lag. And in August this started to feed through. MeAndMyGolf works for me better than one-on-one tuition with a teaching pro. I think this is because with the latter my swing is like a house of cards; all parts of the swing become up for grabs and I end up with no swing for at least a year. With MeAndMyGolf, I keep my swing private and only I know how to piece it all together; I can fix one thing at a time and integrate the change into my whole swing. So, on to the next fault to fix for 2018... Read More
Woods overcame difficulties with stuttering as a boy. 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."
Woods had back surgery on September 16, 2015. In late March 2016, he announced that he would miss the Masters while he recovered from the surgery; he had also missed the 2014 Masters due to a back problem. "I'm absolutely making progress, and I'm really happy with how far I've come," he explained in a statement. "But I still have no timetable to return to competitive golf." However, he did attend the Masters Champions Dinner on April 5, 2016. For the first time in his career, he missed all four majors in one year due to problems with his back. In October 2016, he told Charlie Rose on PBS that he still wanted to break Jack Nicklaus's record of 18 major titles. Woods underwent back surgery in December 2016 and spent the next 15 months off the Tour. He made his return to competitive golf in the Hero World Challenge.
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.
Farmers Insurance Open: At the beginning of the year, committed to the Farmers Insurance Open, The Honda Classic and the Omega Dubai Desert Classic on the European Tour. Making his first start in an official PGA TOUR event for the first time since the 2015 Wyndham Championship (T10), opened the Farmers Insurance Open with a 4-over 76 on the South course, his highest score ever to start a year as a professional. Missed the 36-hole cut after a second-round 72 for a 4-over total.
Early in Woods' career, a small number of golf industry analysts expressed concern about his impact on the competitiveness of the game and the public appeal of professional golf. Sportswriter Bill Lyon of Knight Ridder asked in a column, "Isn't Tiger Woods actually bad for golf?" (though Lyon ultimately concluded that he was not). At first, some pundits feared that Woods would drive the spirit of competition out of the game of golf by making existing courses obsolete and relegating opponents to simply competing for second place each week.