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Sunday, May 2, 2010

Tiger Woods

Eldrick Tont "Tiger" Woods (born December 30, 1975) is an American professional golfer whose achievements to date rank him among the most successful golfers of all time. Currently the World No. 1, he was the highest-paid professional athlete in 2008, having earned an estimated $110 million from winnings and endorsements.

Woods has won 14 professional major golf championships, the second highest of any male player (Jack Nicklaus leads with 18), and 71 PGA Tour events, third all time.He has more career major wins and career PGA Tour wins than any other active golfer. He is the youngest player to achieve the career Grand Slam, and the youngest and fastest to win 50 tournaments on tour. Additionally, Woods is only the second golfer, after Jack Nicklaus, to have achieved a career Grand Slam three times. Woods has won 16 World Golf Championships, and has won at least one of those events each of the 11 years they have been in existence.

Woods has held the number one position in the world rankings for the most consecutive weeks and for the greatest total number of weeks. He has been awarded PGA Player of the Year a record ten times, the Byron Nelson Award for lowest adjusted scoring average a record eight times, and has the record of leading the money list in nine different seasons.

On December 11, 2009, Woods announced he would take an indefinite leave from professional golf to focus on his marriage after he admitted infidelity. His multiple infidelities were revealed by over a dozen women, through many worldwide media sources. Woods returned to competition for the 2010 Masters on April 8, 2010, after a break lasting 20 weeks.

Early life and amateur golf career

Woods (age 2) on The Mike Douglas Show. From left, Tiger Woods, Mike Douglas, Earl Woods and Bob Hope.Woods grew up in Orange County, California. He was a child prodigy, introduced to golf before the age of two, by his athletic father Earl, who was a good standard amateur golfer and one of the earliest Negro college baseball players at Kansas State University. In 1978, Tiger putted against comedian Bob Hope in a television appearance on The Mike Douglas Show. Before turning three, Tiger entered and won the Under Age 10 section of the Drive, Pitch, and Putt competition, held at the Navy Golf Course in Cypress, California. At age three, he shot a 48 over nine holes over the Cypress Navy course, and at age five, he appeared in Golf Digest and on ABC's That's Incredible In 1984 at the age of eight, he won the 9–10 boys' event, the youngest age group available, at the Junior World Golf Championships. He first broke 80 at age eight. He went on to win the Junior World Championships six times, including four consecutive wins from 1988 to 1991.

Woods' father Earl wrote that Tiger first beat him when he was 11 years old, with Earl trying his best. Earl lost to Tiger every time from then on. Woods' first major national junior tournament was the 1989 Big I, when he was 13 years old. Woods was paired with pro John Daly, then relatively unknown, in the final round; the event's format placed a professional with each group of juniors who had qualified. Daly birdied three of the last four holes to beat Woods by only one stroke. As a young teenager, Woods first met Jack Nicklaus in Los Angeles at the Bel-Air Country Club, when Nicklaus was performing a clinic for the club's members. Woods was part of the show, and impressed Nicklaus and the crowd with his skills and potential.

While attending Western High School in Anaheim at the age of 15, Woods became the youngest ever U.S. Junior Amateur Champion in 1991, was voted Southern California Amateur Player of the Year for the second consecutive year, and Golf Digest Junior Amateur Player of the Year for 1991. In 1992, he defended his title at the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship, becoming the first multiple winner, competed in his first PGA Tour event, the Nissan Los Angeles Open, and was named Golf Digest Amateur Player of the Year, Golf World Player of the Year, and Golfweek National Amateur of the Year.

The following year, Woods won his third consecutive U.S. Junior Amateur Championship, and remains the event's youngest-ever and only multiple winner. In 1994, he became the youngest-ever winner of the U.S. Amateur Championship, a record that stood until 2008 when it was broken by Danny Lee. Woods won over the TPC at Sawgrass in Florida. He was a member of the American team at the 1994 Eisenhower Trophy World Amateur Golf Team Championships (winning), and the 1995 Walker Cup (losing).

Woods graduated from Western High School in 1994 at age 18, and was voted "Most Likely to Succeed" among the graduating class. He had starred for the high school's golf team under coach Don Crosby.

2008: injury-shortened season
Woods started the 2008 season with an eight-stroke victory at the Buick Invitational. The win marked his 62nd PGA Tour victory, tying him with Arnold Palmer for fourth on the all time list.[88] This marked his sixth victory at the event, the sixth time he has begun the PGA Tour season with a victory, and his third PGA Tour win in a row. The following week, he was trailing by four strokes going into the final round of the Dubai Desert Classic, but made six birdies on the back nine for a dramatic one-stroke victory. He took home his 15th World Golf Championships event at the Accenture Match Play Championship with a record-breaking 8 & 7 victory in the final.

In his next event, the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Woods got off to a slow start, finishing the first round at even par and tied for 34th place. After finishing the third round in a five-way tie for first place, he completed his fifth consecutive PGA Tour victory with a dramatic 24-foot putt on the 18th hole to defeat Bart Bryant by a stroke. It was also his fifth career victory in this event. Geoff Ogilvy stopped Woods's run at the WGC-CA Championship, a tournament Woods had won in each of the previous three years. He remains the only golfer to have had more than one streak of at least five straight wins on the PGA Tour.

Despite bold predictions that Woods might again challenge for the Grand Slam, he did not mount a serious charge at the 2008 Masters Tournament, struggling with his putter through each round. He would still finish alone in second, three strokes behind the champion, Trevor Immelman. On April 15, 2008, he underwent his third left knee arthroscopic surgery in Park City, Utah, and missed two months on the PGA Tour. The first surgery he had was in 1994 when he had a benign tumor removed and the second in December 2002. He was named Men's Fitness's Fittest Athlete in the June/July 2008 issue.

Tiger Woods walks off the 8th green at Torrey Pines during a practice round at the 2008 U.S. OpenWoods returned for the 2008 U.S. Open in one of the most anticipated golfing groupings in history between him, Phil Mickelson and Adam Scott, the top three golfers in the world. Woods struggled the first day on the course, notching a double bogey on his first hole. He would end the round at +1 (72), four shots off the lead. He scored −3 (68) his second day, still paired with Mickelson, managing 5 birdies, 1 eagle and 4 bogeys. On the third day of the tournament, he started off with a double bogey once again and was trailing by 5 shots with six holes to play. However, he finished the round by making 2 eagle putts, a combined 100 feet (30 m) in length, and a chip-in birdie to take a one shot lead into the final round. His final putt assured that he would be in the final group for the sixth time in the last eight major championships.

On Sunday, June 15, Woods began the day with another double bogey, and trailed Rocco Mediate by one stroke after 71 holes. He winced after several of his tee shots, and sometimes made an effort to keep weight off of his left foot. Woods was behind by one stroke when he reached the final hole. Left with a 12-foot putt for birdie, he made the shot to force an 18-hole playoff with Mediate on Monday. Despite leading by as many as three strokes at one point in the playoff, Woods again dropped back and needed to birdie the 18th to force sudden death with Mediate, and did so. Woods made par on the first sudden death hole; Mediate subsequently missed his par putt, giving Woods his 14th major championship. After the tournament, 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 after winning the U.S. Open, Woods announced that he would be required to undergo reconstructive anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) surgery on his left knee and would miss the remainder of the 2008 golf season including the final two major championships: The Open Championship, and the PGA Championship. Woods also revealed that he had been playing for at least 10 months with a torn ligament in his left knee, and sustained a double stress fracture in his left tibia while rehabbing after the surgery he had after the Masters. Publications throughout the world asserted his U.S. Open victory as "epic" and praised his efforts especially after learning of the extent of his knee injury. Woods called it "My greatest ever championship – the best of the 14 because of all the things that have gone on over the past week."

Woods' absence from the remainder of the season caused PGA Tour TV ratings to decline. Overall viewership for the second half of the 2008 season saw a 46.8 percent decline as compared to 2007.

2009: returning to the PGA Tour
Called "one of the most anticipated returns in sports" by the Associated Press, Woods' first PGA Tour event after an eight month layoff came at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. He lost to Tim Clark in the second round. His first stroke play event was the WGC-CA Championship at Doral where he finished 9th (−11). Woods won his first title of the year at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, where he was five strokes behind Sean O'Hair entering the final round. Woods shot a final round 67 and made a 16-foot birdie putt at the final hole to defeat O'Hair by one stroke.[105] Afterwards, he would continue to perform consistently. At The Masters, he finished sixth, four strokes behind eventual winner Ángel Cabrera. Then, despite having the 18-hole lead at the Quail Hollow Championship, he finished two strokes behind Sean O'Hair. At The Players Championship, he played in the final grouping on Sunday, but finished eighth.

Woods won his second event of 2009 at the Memorial Tournament. He trailed by four shots after three rounds but shot a final round 65, which included two consecutive birdies to end the tournament. The win was Woods' fourth at the event. Woods won his third event of the 2009 season on July 5 at the AT&T National, an event hosted by Woods himself. However, for the third time going into a 2009 major, Woods failed to capitalize on his preceding win. Instead, at the 2009 Open Championship, he missed the cut for only the second time in a major championship since turning professional.

On August 2, Woods captured the Buick Open for his fourth win of the season, a three-shot victory over three other players. After firing an opening-round 71 that put him in 95th place and outside of the cutline, Woods responded with a second-round 63, nine-under par, that vaulted him into contention. A third-round 65 put him atop the leaderboard and he coasted to victory with a final-round 69 for a 20-under 268 four-round total. This was the biggest turnaround pro victory to date.

Woods won his 70th career event the following week at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. He went head-to-head against Pádraig Harrington on Sunday until the 16th, where Harrington made a triple bogey 8 on the par 5 and Woods made birdie. Tiger went on to win the event by 4 strokes over Harrington and Robert Allenby.

At the 2009 PGA Championship, Woods shot a 5-under 67 to take the lead after the first round. He remained leader or co-leader through the second and third rounds. Going into the final round, Woods had a 2 stroke lead at 8-under. However, at the 68th hole, Woods was overtaken for the first time atop the leaderboard by Yang Yong-eun. Yang eventually won the tournament by three strokes over Woods who finished second. It marked the first time that Woods would fail to win a major when leading or co-leading after 54 holes and the first time he had lost any tournament on American soil when leading by more than one shot. It also meant that Woods would end the year without a major for the first time since 2004.

Woods won his 71st career title at the BMW Championship. The win moved him to first place in the FedEx Cup standings going into the final playoff event. It was his fifth win at the BMW Championship (including three wins as the Western Open) and marked the fifth time he had won an event five or more times in his career on the PGA Tour. Woods finished second at The Tour Championship to win his second FedEx Cup title.

At the 2009 Presidents Cup, Woods had an impressive and equally spectacular performance in which he won all five of his matches at the event. He joined his friend Mark O'Meara, who won all five of his matches at the 1996 Presidents Cup, and Shigeki Maruyama, who accomplished this feat in the 1998 Presidents Cup. In all three instances, their respective teams won the competition. Woods was paired with Steve Stricker all four rounds of the competition in foursomes and four-ball. On the first day of foursomes, they won 6 and 4 over the team of Ryo Ishikawa and Geoff Ogilvy. In Friday's match of four-ball, they won over the team of Ángel Cabrera and Geoff Ogilvy, 5 and 3. On Saturday, they beat the team of Tim Clark and Mike Weir after trailing for most of the match by winning the 17th and 18th holes to win 1-up in morning foursomes, and in the afternoon four-ball they defeated the team of Ryo Ishikawa and Y. E. Yang by the score of 4 and 2. In the singles match, Woods was paired with his nemesis from the 2009 PGA Championship, Yang. Yang grabbed the quick 1-up lead on the first hole, but on the third hole lost the lead and Woods went onto win the match by a score of 6 and 5. In addition, Woods was the one who clinched the Cup for the United States, which was his first time ever in his career he had the honor and opportunity to do this in a team event competition.

In November 2009, Woods was paid $3.3 million to play in the JBWere Masters, held at Kingston Heath in Melbourne, Australia from November 12 to 15. The event was sold out for the first time. He went on to win at 14 under par, two strokes over Australian Greg Chalmers, marking his 38th European Tour win and his first win on the PGA Tour of Australasia.

After his past marital infidelities came to light, Woods announced an indefinite break from competitive golf at the end of 2009. In March 2010, he announced that he would be playing in the 2010 Masters. In late March, he began working on a new commercial for longstanding sponsor Nike.

Missing the start of the 2010 season, Woods returned to competition for the 2010 Masters Tournament in Augusta, Georgia, starting on April 8, 2010,[129] after a break lasting 20 weeks. He finished the tournament tied for fourth. Woods next competed at the 2010 Quail Hollow Championship at the end of April, but missed the cut for just the sixth time of his career. He shot his second-worst round as a professional on 30 April, a 7-over 79 during the second round to miss the 36-hole cut by eight strokes.

Playing style

Woods practicing before 2004 Ryder Cup at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills, MichiganWhen Woods first joined the professional tour in 1996, his long drives had a large impact on the world of golf. However, when he did not upgrade his equipment in the following years (insisting upon the use of True Temper Dynamic Gold steel-shafted clubs and smaller steel clubheads that promoted accuracy over distance), many opponents caught up to him. Phil Mickelson even made a joke in 2003 about Woods using "inferior equipment", which did not sit well with Nike, Titleist or Woods. During 2004, Woods finally upgraded his driver technology to a larger clubhead and graphite shaft, which, coupled with his clubhead speed, made him one of the Tour's lengthier players off the tee once again.

Despite his power advantage, Woods has always focused on developing an excellent all-around game. Although in recent years he has typically been near the bottom of the Tour rankings in driving accuracy, his iron play is generally accurate, his recovery and bunker play is very strong, and his putting (especially under pressure) is possibly his greatest asset. He is largely responsible for a shift to higher standards of athleticism amongst professional golfers, and is known for putting in more hours of practice than most.

From mid-1993, while he was still an amateur, until 2004, Woods worked almost exclusively with leading swing coach Butch Harmon. From mid-1997, Harmon and Woods fashioned a major redevelopment of Woods' full swing, achieving greater consistency, better distance control, and better kinesiology. The changes began to pay off in 1999.[140] Since March 2004, Woods has been coached by Hank Haney. In June 2004, Woods was involved in a media spat with Harmon, who also works as a golf broadcaster, when Harmon suggested that he was in "denial" about the problems in his game, but they publicly patched up their differences

Charity and youth projects
Woods has established several charitable and youth projects.

The Tiger Woods Foundation: The Tiger Woods Foundation was established in 1996 by Woods and his father Earl. It focuses on projects for children. Initially these comprised golf clinics (aimed especially at disadvantaged children), and a grant program. Further activities added since then include university scholarships, an association with Target House at St. Jude Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee; the Start Something character development program, which reached one million participants by 2003; and the Tiger Woods Learning Center. The Tiger Woods Foundation recently has teamed up with the PGA Tour to create a new PGA tour event that will take place in the nation's capital (Washington, D.C.) beginning in July, 2007.
In The City Golf Clinics and Festivals: Since 1997, the Tiger Woods Foundation has conducted junior golf clinics across the country.[145] The Foundation began the “In the City” golf clinic program in 2003. The first three clinics were held in Indio, California, Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania, and San Juan, Puerto Rico, and were targeted to all youth, ages 7–17, and their families. Each three-day event features golf lessons on Thursday and Friday of clinic week and a free community festival on Saturday. Host cities invite 15 junior golfers to participate in the annual Tiger Woods Foundation Youth Clinic. This three-day junior golf event includes tickets to Disney Resorts, a junior golf clinic, and an exhibition by Tiger Woods.
Tiger Woods Learning Center: This is a 35,000-square-foot (3,300 m2) educational facility in Anaheim, California which opened in February 2006. It is expected to be used by several thousand students each year in grades 4 to 12. The center features seven classrooms, extensive multi-media facilities and an outdoor golf teaching area.
Tiger Jam: An annual fundraising concert which has raised over $10 million for the Tiger Woods Foundation. Past performers at Tiger Jam include Sting, Bon Jovi and Stevie Wonder.
Chevron World Challenge: An annual off-season charity golf tournament. The event carries generous prize money, and in 2007 Woods donated his $1.35 million first-place check to his Learning Center.
Tiger Woods Foundation National Junior Golf Team: An eighteen member team which competes in the annual Junior World Golf Championships.
Woods has also participated in charity work for his current caddy, Steve Williams. On April 24, 2006 Woods won an auto racing event that benefited the Steve Williams Foundation to raise funds to provide sporting careers for disadvantaged youth.

Woods has written a golf instruction column for Golf Digest magazine since 1997, and in 2001 wrote a best-selling golf instruction book, How I Play Golf, which had the largest print run of any golf book for its first edition, 1.5 million copies.

Golf course design
Main article: Tiger Woods Design
Woods announced on December 3, 2006 that he will develop his first golf course in the United Arab Emirates through his golf course design company, Tiger Woods Design. The Tiger Woods Dubai will feature a 7,700-yard (7,000 m), par-72 course named Al Ruwaya (meaning "serenity"), a 60,000-square-foot (6,000 m2) clubhouse, a golf academy, 320 exclusive villas and a boutique hotel with 80 suites. Tiger Woods Dubai is a joint venture between Woods and Tatweer, a member of the government-affiliated Dubai Holding. Woods chose Dubai because he was excited about the "challenge of transforming a desert terrain into a world-class golf course." The development was scheduled to be finished in late 2009 at Dubailand, the region's largest tourism and leisure project. However, economic difficulties in Dubai have delayed the completion of this project.

On August 14, 2007, Woods announced his first course to be designed in the U.S., The Cliffs at High Carolina. The private course will sit at about 4,000 feet (1,200 m) in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Asheville, North Carolina.

Woods will also design a golf course in Mexico. This will be his first oceanfront course. It will be called Punta Brava, which will be located by Ensenada, Baja California. The project will include an 18-hole course designed by Woods, 40 estate lots of up to three acres in size, and 80 villa homes of up to 7,000 square feet. Construction will start in 2009 with the project scheduled for completion in 2011

On August 20, 2007, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and First Lady Maria Shriver announced that Woods would be inducted into the California Hall of Fame. He was inducted December 5, 2007 at The California Museum for History, Women and the Arts in Sacramento.

He has been named "Athlete of the Decade" by the Associated Press in December 2009.[178] He has been named Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year a record-tying four times, and is the only person to be named Sports Illustrated's Sportsman of the Year more than once.

Since his record-breaking win at the 1997 Masters Tournament, golf's increased popularity is commonly attributed to Woods' presence. He is credited by some sources for dramatically increasing prize money in golf, generating interest in new audiences, and for drawing the largest TV audiences in golf history

Cut streak
In both Byron Nelson's and Woods's eras, "making the cut" has been defined as receiving a paycheck. However, in Nelson's day, only players who placed in the top 20 (sometimes as few as 15) in an event won a paycheck, whereas in Woods's day only players who reach a low enough score (top 70 and ties for most events) within the first 36 holes win a paycheck. Several golf analysts argue that Woods did not actually surpass Nelson's consecutive cuts mark, reasoning that 31 of the tournaments in which Woods competed were "no-cut" events, meaning all the players in the field were guaranteed to compete throughout the entire event regardless of their scores through 36 holes (and hence all "made the cut," meaning that they all received a paycheck). These analysts argue that this would leave Woods's final consecutive cuts made at 111, and Nelson's at 113.

However, at least ten of the tournaments in which Nelson played did not have modern-day cuts; that is, all of the players in these events were guaranteed to compete past 36 holes. The Masters, for example, did not institute a 36-hole cut until 1957 (which was well after Nelson retired), the PGA Championship was match play until 1958, and it is unclear whether or not three other events in which Nelson competed had 36-hole cuts. Therefore, these analysts remove "no 36-hole cut" events from both cut streak measures, leaving Nelson's consecutive cuts made at 103 (or possibly less) and Woods's at 111.

In the tournaments in which Nelson competed that did not have 36-hole cuts (that is: the Masters, PGA Championship and the possible three other tournaments), only the top 20 players received a paycheck even though all players in these events were guaranteed to compete past 36 holes.Hence, in these no-cut events, Nelson still placed in the top 20, so Nelson's 113 cuts made are reflective of his 113 top 20 finishes. Woods achieved a top 20 finish 21 consecutive times (from July 2000 to July 2001) and, in the 31 no-cut events in which he played, he won 10 and finished out of the top 10 only five times. Others, including Woods himself, argue that the two streaks cannot be compared, because the variation of tournament structures in the two eras is too great for any meaningful comparison to be made.

A more relevant comparison on cut streaks is the 105 consecutive cuts made by Jack Nicklaus between 1970 and 1976, ending at the 1976 World Open.[194] The cut format from that era was virtually identical to the current PGA Tour practice, and most events in Nicklaus' streak, except for the Tournament of Champions (now the SBS Championship), the World Series of Golf (now the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational), and the U.S. Professional Match Play Championship (10 events for Nicklaus) had a cut made after 36 holes.

Personal life
In November 2003, Woods became engaged to Elin Nordegren, a Swedish former model and daughter of former minister of migration Barbro Holmberg and radio journalist Thomas Nordegren.They were introduced during The Open Championship in 2001 by Swedish golfer Jesper Parnevik, who had employed her as an au pair. They married on October 5, 2004 at the Sandy Lane resort on the Caribbean island of Barbados and live at Isleworth, a community in Windermere, a suburb of Orlando, Florida. They also have homes in Jackson, Wyoming, California, and Sweden. In January 2006, they purchased a $39 million residential property in Jupiter Island, Florida, intending to make it their primary residence. Jupiter Island residents include fellow golfers Gary Player, Greg Norman, and Nick Price, as well as singers Celine Dion and Alan Jackson. In 2007, a guest house owned by Woods on the Jupiter Island estate was destroyed in a fire caused by lightning.

Early in the morning of June 18, 2007, Elin gave birth to the couple's first child, a daughter, Sam Alexis Woods, in Orlando. The birth occurred just one day after Woods finished tied for second in the 2007 U.S. Open. Woods chose to name his daughter Sam because his father said that Woods looked more like a Sam. On September 2, 2008, Woods announced on his website that he and his wife were expecting their second child. Five months later, it was announced that Elin had given birth to a boy named Charlie Axel on February 8, 2009

Marital infidelity and career break
On November 25, 2009, supermarket tabloid The National Enquirer published a story claiming that Woods had an extramarital affair with nightclub manager Rachel Uchitel‎, a claim she denied. The story began to attract media attention when Woods had a car accident a day and a half later. He was leaving his home around 2:30 a.m. in his SUV, a 2009 Cadillac Escalade, when he collided with a hedge, a fire hydrant, and finally a tree down the street. Woods was treated for minor facial lacerations, and cited for careless driving. He refused to speak to the police and the accident fanned intense speculation for the following two days until he released a statement on his website. He took blame for the crash, but said it was a private matter; he also praised his wife Elin for getting him out of the car.

Woods announced a short time later that he would not play in or attend his own charity golf tournament, the Chevron World Challenge, or any other remaining tournaments in 2009.

Interest in the story grew, until San Diego cocktail waitress Jaimee Grubbs publicly claimed in the gossip magazine Us Weekly that she had a two-and-a-half-year affair with Woods, producing voice and text messages that she said Woods left her. The voice message stated: "Hey it's Tiger, I need you to do me a huge favor. Can you please take your name off your phone? My wife went through my phone...You got to do this for me. Huge. Quickly. Bye." Woods released an apology on the same day the story was published, expressing regret for "transgressions" and saying "I have let my family down." Woods was not specific about the reason for the apology, and requested privacy.

After over a dozen women claimed in various media outlets that they had affairs with Woods, media pressure increased.On December 11, he released another statement, admitting to infidelity, offering another apology,and announcing an indefinite hiatus from professional golf.On the same day, lawyers acting on his behalf obtained an injunction in the High Court of Justice of England and Wales, preventing the publication in the UK of any images of Woods naked or having sexual intercourse, while denying that Woods was aware of the existence of any such images. Reporting the subject of the injunction was also itself injuncted.The following week, one of the women who had undertaken media interviews regarding her relationship with Woods admitted having taken photographs of Woods naked, on the pre-meditated premise that she would sell them if they ever broke up.

The day after the statement, several companies indicated they were reconsidering endorsement deals. Gillette suspended advertising featuring Woods, and said they would not be hiring him for any public appearances for the company. On December 13, management consultancy firm Accenture completely cut its sponsorship of Woods, stating that the golfer was "no longer the right representative."

On December 8, 2009, Nielsen indicated that advertisers had tentatively suspended TV ads featuring Woods after news of extramarital affairs emerged. Major sponsors initially pledged support and to retain Woods, but he was suspended by Gillette on December 11, and completely dropped by Accenture on December 13. On December 18, TAG Heuer dropped Woods "for the foreseeable future" from its advertising campaigns, only to then change their home page by December 23 to the statement that "Tag Heuer stands with Tiger Woods". On January 1, 2010, AT&T announced the end of its sponsorship of Woods. On January 4, 2010, Electronic Arts, via the blog of President Peter Moore, stated that they would continue to work with Woods and cited their collaboration on a web-based golf game, Tiger Woods PGA Tour Online. On January 13, General Motors ended a free car loan deal that had been due to end on December 31, 2010.

A December 2009 study by Christopher R. Knittel and Victor Stango, economics professors at the University of California at Davis, estimated that the shareholder loss caused by Woods' extramarital affairs to be between $5 billion and $12 billion.

Golf Digest magazine, which had featured monthly instructional articles from Woods on an exclusive basis since 1997, announced in its February 2010 issue that it would suspend publication of articles by Woods while he works out his problems.

On February 19, 2010, Woods delivered a televised speech from the PGA Tour headquarters in Florida. He admitted that he had been unfaithful to his wife[transcript source? – see discussion]. He said he used to believe he was entitled to do whatever he wanted to do, and that, due to his success, normal rules did not apply to him. He said he realizes now that he was wrong to have had extramarital affairs, and apologized for the hurt his behavior caused to his family, friends, fans, and business partners. Woods stated he had strayed from Buddhism, his trained faith since childhood, and that he would work to re-embrace his faith in the future. Woods also stated he had been in a therapy program for 45 days, and would be returning there soon. He stated he planned to return to competitive golf in the future, but was unspecific on details. He did not take questions.

On February 27, 2010, energy drink firm Gatorade ended its sponsorship of Tiger Woods. However, Gatorade said it would continue its partnership with the charitable Tiger Woods Foundation. In March Irish bookmaker Paddy Power revealed that Woods had declined a $75 million endorsement deal with them. On March 16, 2010, he announced that he would return to golf at the 2010 Masters. However, his wife Elin planned to return to Sweden instead of attending the tournament.

On March 21, 2010, he was interviewed by Tom Rinaldi, his first interview after the incident. On April 29, 2010, it was reported that Woods had confessed to his wife that he has had 120 affairs. He also admitted having a one night stand with his neighbours' 21 year old daughter whom he has known since she was 14. Reports are emerging that his wife is considering divorce.


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