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Tiger Woods

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Tiger Woods (born Eldrick Tiger Woods, 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, Woods was the highest paid professional athlete in 2006, having earned an estimated $100 million from winnings and endorsements. In August 2007, at the age of 31, he won his thirteenth professional major golf championship and has more career wins on the PGA Tour than any other active golfer. He is the only active golfer in the top 10 in career major wins (2nd) and career PGA Tour wins (5th).

Tiger got his nickname from a Vietnamese soldier friend of his father, Vuong Dang Phong, to whom his father had also given the Tiger nickname. Woods became generally known by that name and by the time he had achieved national prominence in junior and amateur golf was simply known as "Tiger Woods." On his twenty-first birthday, Woods legally changed his name from from Eldrick to Tiger. He grew up in Orange County, attending high school at Western High in Anaheim.

At the Open Championship, Woods staged a tour de force in course management, putting, and accuracy with irons. Using almost exclusively long irons off the tee (he hit driver only one time the entire week — the 16th hole of the first round), Woods missed just four fairways all week (hitting the fairway 92 percent of the time), and his score of '18 to par (three eagles, 19 birdies, 43 pars, and seven bogeys) was just one off of his major championship record '19, set at St Andrews in 2000. The victory was an emotional one for Woods, who dedicated his play to his father's memory. Four weeks later, at the PGA Championship, Woods again won in dominating fashion — making only three bogeys, tying the record for fewest in a major. He finished the tournament at 18-under-par equaling the to-par record in the PGA that he shares with Bob May. In August 2006 he won his 50th professional tournament at the Buick Open, and at 30 years and 7 months old, he became the youngest to do so. He ended the year by winning six consecutive PGA Tour events, and won the 3 most prestigious awards given by the PGA Tour (Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, and Byron Nelson Awards) in the same year for a record seventh time. At the close of his first eleven seasons, Tiger's 54 wins and 12 major wins had eclipsed the all time eleven-season PGA Tour total win record of 51 (set by Byron Nelson) and total majors record of 11 (set by Jack Nicklaus). He was named Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year for a record-tying fourth time.

He has been the PGA Tour Money Winner seven times, trailing Jack Nicklaus by one, the PGA Player of the Year a record eight times, the Vardon Trophy winner a record six times, and the Byron Nelson Award winner a record seven times. Woods 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. Bobby Jones won all four of what were in his era considered major championships. Woods's win at the 2005 Open Championship made him only the second golfer (after Nicklaus) to have won all four majors more than once. Woods holds at least a share of the scoring record in relation to par in all four majors, and also holds the margin of victory record in two majors, The Masters and the U.S. Open.


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