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Sunday, December 20, 2009

Edition 5: Tiger Woods continued


Professional career wins
Woods has won 71 official PGA Tour events including 14 majors. He is 141 when going into the final round of a major with at least a share of the lead. He has been heralded as "the greatest closer in history" by multiple golf experts. He owns the lowest career scoring average and the most career earnings of any player in PGA Tour history.
He has spent the most consecutive and cumulative weeks atop the world rankings. He is one of five players (along with Gene Sarazen, Ben Hogan, Jack Nicklaus, and Gary Player) to have won all four professional major championships in his career, known as the Career Grand Slam, and was the youngest to do so. Woods is the only player to have won all four professional major championships in a row, accomplishing the feat in the 2000-2001 seasons.
When Woods turned pro, Mike "Fluff" Cowan was his caddie until March 8, 1999. He was replaced by Steve Williams, who has become a close friend of Woods and is often credited with helping him with key shots and putts.
l PGA Tour wins (71)
l European Tour wins (38)
l Japan Golf Tour wins (2)
l Asian Tour wins (1)
l PGA Tour of Australasia wins (1)
l Other professional wins (15) l Amateur wins (21)
Playing style
Woods practicing before 2004 Ryder Cup at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan‹See Tfd›
When 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 either 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.
Early in his professional career, Woods worked almost exclusively with leading swing coach Butch Harmon, with whom he started in 1993,[134] but since March 2004, he has been coached by Hank Haney. In June 2004, Woods was involved in a media spat with Harmon, who 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.
While Woods is considered one of the most charismatic figures in golfing history, his approach is, at its core, cautious. He aims for consistency. Although he is better than any other Tour player when he is in top form, his dominance comes not from regularly posting extremely low rounds, but instead from avoiding bad rounds. He plays fewer tournaments than most professionals (1521 per year, compared to the typical 2530), and focuses his efforts on preparing for (and peaking at) the majors and the most prestigious of the other tournaments. His manner off of the course is cautious as well, as he carries himself in interviews and public appearances with a carefully controlled demeanor reminiscent of the corporate athlete persona developed between Nike and Michael Jordan.
Other ventures
Charity and youth projects
Woods has established several charitable and youth projects.
l 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 parti-cipants by 2003; & 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.
l In The City Golf Clinics and Festivals: Since 1997, the Tiger Woods Foundation has conducted junior golf clinics across the country. The Foundation began the “In the City” golf clinic program in 2003. The first three clinics were held in Indio, California, Wilkinsburg, Pennsyl-vania, and San Juan, Puerto Rico, and were targeted to all youth, ages 717, 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.
l 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.
l Tiger Jam: An annual fund-raising concert which has raised over $10 million for the Tiger Woods Foundation. Past performers at Tiger Jam include Sting, Bon Jovi and Stevie Wonder.
l 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.
l 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.
Writings
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.
Honors
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 spent the most consecutive and cumulative weeks atop the world rankings. He is one of five players (along with Gene Sarazen, Ben Hogan, Jack Nicklaus, and Gary Player) to have won all four professional major championships in his career, known as the Career Grand Slam, and was the youngest to do so. Woods is the only player to have won all four professional major championships in a row, accomplishing the feat in the 2000-2001 seasons.
When Woods turned pro, Mike "Fluff" Cowan was his caddie until March 8, 1999. He was replaced by Steve Williams, who has become a close friend of Woods and is often credited with helping him with key shots and putts.

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