Tiger Woods (born Eldrick Tont Woods, 30.12.1975)
Tiger Woods is a professional American golfer and is considered to be one of the most successful players of all time.
Tiger Woods: Personal Life
Tiger Woods was born in Cypress, California. His father, Earl, was a retired US Army lieutenant colonel, a veteran of the Vietnam war. Earl passed away in 2006. His mother is named Kultida Woods. Tiger was named Eldrick after an old army friend of his father's. Tont is a traditional Thai name.
Tiger Woods graduated from Western High School, Anaheim, in 1994.
Tiger Woods: Golfing Career - Amateur
Tiger Woods was a golfing prodigy, as a child. He started playing at the age of two and in 1978, he putted against the comedian Bob Hope in a TV appearance on The Mike Douglas Show. At the age of three, he shot a 48 over nine holes in California. Two years later, he appeared on the TV show That's Incredible. He consistently beat children older than him, winning the Junior World Golf Championships in the 9-10 years age group when he was just eight years old.
At the age of 15, Tiger Woods became the youngest person ever to win the US Junior Amateur Championship. He was also the youngest to win the US Amateur Championship. In 1994, he was a member of the American team for the Eisenhower Trophy World Amateur Golf Team Championships. The following year, he was also in the national team for the Walker Cup.
In 1994, Tiger Woods enrolled at Stanford University, where he majored in Economics and was nicknamed 'Urkel'. He was voted Stanford's Male Freshman of the Year (which covers all of the University's sportsmen). In his first PGA Tour, he was the only amateur to make the cut. He was also the top amateur at the 1996 Open Championship.
Tiger Woods: Professional
It was in August 1996 that Tiger Woods became a professional golfer, signing endorsement deals with Nike ($40 million) and Titleist ($20 million). His first professional game was at the Greater Milwaukee Open. He tied 60th place. However, he won two events in the following months and qualified for the Tour Championship.
Tiger Woods rose to World No. 1 in his 42nd week of professional play; the fastest ever ascent to number one. He was the first golfer to ever win the PGA Player of the Year award in their debut year as a professional.
Woods' 1999 season was finished with eight wins. This feat had not been achieved in over 25 years. 2000 was another record-breaking season, winning three consecutive majors and nine PGA Tour events. He also won the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am for the sixth time in a row.
When Tiger Woods went face-face with Bob May in the 2000 PGA Championship, May almost knocked Woods off of his throne but was unsuccessful. That year, he won the Triple Crown of Golf (the US, British and Canadian Open Tournaments). In 2002, Tiger Wood became one of only three golfers to have won back-to-back Masters Tournaments - the other two being Nick Faldo and Jack Nicklaus.
In 2003 and 2004 Tiger Woods failed to win a major tournament, citing the changes that he was making to his swing as a reason for the dip in his success. Luckily, Woods was back on form by 2005, though in 2006, he failed to win his fifth Masters championship. Following his father's death, winning the 2006 Open Championship was an emotional time for Tiger Woods.
2007 - 2009 continued to be successful for Tiger Woods, aside from an injury-hit season in 2008 but towards the latter part of 2009, Woods was hitting the front pages of the tabloid headlines, rather than the sports pages.
Tiger Woods: Personal Life
Tiger Woods married his wife Elin Nordegren in 2004. Their first child, daughter Sam Alexis, was born in 2006. Their son, Charlie Axel was born in 2009.
In November 2009, it was reported that Tiger Woods was involved in a car crash outside of his house. Over the course of the next few weeks, it was reported that he had engaged in several infidelities, whilst married to Elin. Amongst those alleged to have had affairs with Tiger Woods are Loredana Jolie, Jamie Jungers, Joslyn James, Rachel Uchitel and Jaimee Grubbs.