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Woods image battered but not beyond repair

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Iain Carter | 21:19 UK time, Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Tiger Woods is striving to be a better person and the husband and father his family deserves. So says his second post-crash statement issued amid a flurry of tabloid claims about his private life.

The world's top golfer has issued a plea for privacy and is dismayed at realising "the full extent of what tabloid scrutiny really means."

If you thought his Cadillac took a pounding in his accident in the early hours of Friday morning, that's nothing to the battering his image has subsequently taken.

This is the lowest point of what has been to date the most extraordinarily glittering of careers. The heights he has reached make the fall so much the greater and that's what so whets the appetite of the tabloids. The bigger they are the harder the headlines.

And there is no doubt those headlines are what has prompted the issuing of the statement, no longer could he and his advisors hide behind a "no comment" sign.

But while the message that he has let down his family will disappoint many in his legion of fans, not to mention the sponsors who reward him so handsomely for his wholesome image, this latest development could ultimately help portray Woods in a more human light.

Striving to be a better person has to be a more attractive trait than trying to be a better driver (off the tee I mean) doesn't it? Because that's been the predominant aspect of Woods' image up to this point - his overwhelming desire to become a greater golfer.

tiger_woods_blog.jpg

It's clear from the tone of his statement that he still believes that all he should ever be required to discuss in public is his golf. The rest is none of our business.

But as he and his family must be feeling most painfully at the moment it doesn't work that way when you're a public figure and especially when you are sport's first billionaire.

By pulling out of his tournament, the Chevron Challenge in California, Woods has given himself breathing space to take care of the family issues that currently surround him.

Expect him to return to golf probably in the last week of January at Torrey Pines although February's Dubai Desert Classic might make for an attractively lower-key comeback.

Woods fascinates. He is the all-American hero, who could do no wrong - a winner, a champion without blemish and an aura to fit.

He regards himself as an athlete, he has brought athleticism to golf - indeed he has revolutionised the sport to the extent that the game is now regarded suitable for Olympic inclusion.

That's just one way in which golf has benefited from the extraordinary Woods era. Add in the inflation in prize money since he arrived on the scene and what he has done for television viewing figures and it is easy to see why golf should rally around him.

This is a time when he needs his mates. There are plenty on the Tour who like to regard themselves as friends of Tiger, but how many does he consider trusted confidantes?

His big pal has always been Mark O'Meara, but he's rarely at the same events these days - the same applies to college buddies like Notah Begay and neighbours like John Cook.

Woods likes to surround himself with his own team of managers and advisors when he's on the road. Given the choice between condo and a hotel he'll take the self-catered option every time.

It helps him set himself apart, but it also further isolates him from the rank and file. This fits the image he has always tried to put forward of the special one. It creates a virtuous circle; greatness because of great results leads to great results because of greatness.

But now that circle has been somewhat dented. Woods needs his friends and I suspect he will be pleasantly surprised when he returns to action and finds that sports fans are a pretty forgiving bunch - actually strike that - most of them are probably not that judgemental.

So they'll still be enraptured by his majesty on the golf course, "you are still the maaaannnn!!" they will cry and he will remain the favourite to win at every tournament he plays.

In the wake of his 2006 Open win at Hoylake Woods spoke of how touched he was by the way the British crowds reacted to his emotion at winning his first major since the death of his father earlier that year.

He was genuinely moved but in recent times it strikes me that he has been taking adulation from the galleries rather for granted. I wonder if that might change after these events and whether in the long run he will become a more human, and more popular, figure?

Think about the next three majors: Augusta, Pebble Beach and St Andrews are the venues and all have been brought to their knees by the great Tiger Woods. Even with all this going on it's hard to imagine a second successive year without a major victory in 2010.

Obviously, though, right now his priorities are elsewhere.

Comments

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  • Comment number 1.

    Great blog. Woods is only human after all. It is a shame this story has been blown into such a huge headline. But this does not change my opinion of the great man.

  • Comment number 2.

    What this great man did is nothing compared to what some (or most?) Hollywood celebrities do (DUI, rehab, quick divorce...). So, of course, his fans will forgive him. Isn't this similar to what Michael Phelps did?

    On a different note, you mention that he is the first billionaire sportsman. Do you know who is second, and where he currently stands (in terms of millions)?

  • Comment number 3.

    I think that the reaction says more about the public and our misconceptions/assumptions about people in the public eye than it does about Woods. It seems to be one of the trappings of celebrity that 'famous people' are somehow elevated to lofty pedestals, and it's a long drop.

    Woods is a truly magnificent golfer, but everything off the fairways is just a facade or projection - we simply don't know the guy. Iain, I think you raise some interesting points about how others on the circuit might realise that all the 'holier than thou' consumate human being image may have been carefully crafted PR spiel.

  • Comment number 4.

    Hang on - I think this is overlooking something here. I agree with the sentiment that the only people who have the right to judge Tiger's personal "transgressions" are his wife and, later, his children. He has to live with what he's done, and what might happen as a result, and that can never be undone. For that journey I wish him the best of luck.

    But people seem to be ignoring the fact that a huge proportion of his wealth has been generated through his clean-cut model living image - and while it may be the sponsors that pay him, and will make their own decisions about continuing to support him or not (my guess is that his earnings potential won't slip much for very long), the fans that spend their money on Brand TW are doing so because of that image. It's something they want to associate with - and to that extent Tiger's got to take responsibility to those fans for his error.

    Nobody's perfect - absolutely nobody is perfect - but if you're going to amass a fortune on protraying a certain set of values, then either live up to them, but don't expect to eat your cake and have it. That attitude is utterly offensive, in my mind.

  • Comment number 5.

    Give me a break. We all are born to err. Ask your self if you can find no fault on all activities you have done in the past 24 hours let alone your life.
    To tell you the truth, I came to see golf on Television because of one man called TW. He is a man of excellence in his game. As long as he keeps winning, all other stuffs will be behind him. I can't wait to see him play in San Diego next year. He is 95% better than all other athlets for marketing strategy if that concerns sponsors. Do you think I should change my marketing strategy by shifting to all other athlets who were in the court or been accused of taking steroids?
    Give me a break.

  • Comment number 6.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 7.

    Um, why do people love these athletes so much? I don't especially like golf, I do like watching American football, but none of the players are my "hero's." Yet people will come to guys, like Wood's, defense and berate anyone who trashes Woods for cheating on his wife and family.
    Note to Mr. Woods. Next time, stay clear of the skanks and choose women who have just as much to lose as you.

  • Comment number 8.

    His driving has been notoriously erratic of late but this takes the biscuit. Struggling to really warm to the man with his sour faced performances of late. Perhaps we now know what was troubling him? He has obviously had more than his golfing performance to worry about!

  • Comment number 9.

    Until this year, Tiger has seemed invincible but now some vulnerability is creeping in, on course and off course. No majors, nothing special about his wins; six are a lot but all but one on tracks where he's won multiple times before, the 6th at his own event poorly attended by golf's elite. Phil had arguably the better season.

    And now this, whatever this might be and it's certainly not our business. Except that it's clearly disturbed the cat's equilibrium, the only (golfing) question being: For how long?

    The guess here is that Woods's best Major bet is St.Andrews. But who knows how long this turmoil will last, and who knows if it will carry onto the course.

  • Comment number 10.

    I can understand why Tiger wants privacy, but part of the burden of being famous is your life being broadcasted to the world. The high earnings celebrities make is the compensation for this, and Tiger earns more than most. Tiger did not choose to be famous, he just wanted to play golf, but his rise to celebrity status was unavoidable. To some extent he has managed to keep most of his private life private up until now, but recent events ensured his private life was plastered over the media. There was always going to be a hidden unofficial clause that went with all his earnings, and that was one day even he will be headline news for all the wrong reasons.

  • Comment number 11.

    The quicker he discloses his "Transgressions" the quicker he can move on. Come clean Tiger!!

  • Comment number 12.

    Wasn't Michael Schumacher the first sporting billionaire?

  • Comment number 13.

    It's all well and good him wanting to be known solely for his golf but he's more than willing to use his status as a public figure when he's trying to flog me razorblades.

  • Comment number 14.

    As ravelston states, Michael Schumacher was indeed sports first billionaire back in 2005, still looking good on beating Michael to $2B first!

  • Comment number 15.

    tiger you do the crime you do the time, welcome to the world the rest of us live in

  • Comment number 16.

    I too thought Schumi was the first, but maybe that was in marks not euros or dollars ;-). As for who's currently second behind Woods, it has to be a basketball player - a close one between Lebron James and Kobe Bryant?

    I find Woods's statement really odd - whatever actually happened, surely he didn't need to publicly say he wanted to be a better husband and father? I don't get that.

    First Thierry Henry, now Tiger - come on Roger Federer, let's see what you can do to put Gillette out of business!

  • Comment number 17.

    If Tiger Woods was my parish priest, I'd be disappointed. But he's a professional sportsman, and this pales in comparison to what professional sportsmen do.

    How long is the list of sportsmen and celebs that have had extra-marital affairs. Didn't Boris Becker father a child in a broom cupboard?

    How long is the list of sportsmen that have crashed cars? Some whilst intoxicated.

    So what's the big deal with Tiger? He's done the worst thing on earth now?

    s3

  • Comment number 18.

    Although I feel Woods has let himself and the golf world down, this doesn't really compare to some other sports stars who have much worse problems. Personally, I think a clean sweep of majors this year. A Woods with a point to prove is a very dangerous Woods and this is the one we all want to see. I suspect we won't hear from Woods again until early spring after getting all this out of the way and practising solidly to prove the tabloids wrong and getting on the back pages at least 4 times this year. I look forward to some awesome golf from him this year

  • Comment number 19.

    i can't believe he was allowed to put off talking to the police for so long!

  • Comment number 20.

    "I can't believe he was allowed to put off talking to the police for so long!"

    He hit a tree and a hydrant at low speed! That's hardly the crime of the century. Is it even a crime?

    If I ran off the road and hit my neighbours tree, the police wouldn't even be interested.

    I suspect this is just some kind of opportunity for Tiger-haters to have a field day. Kudos to Tiger if this is the only dirt they can find on him.

    s3

  • Comment number 21.

    Move on, there is nothing here to worry about. Let the Tiger do what he does best, entertain us with his skill as a golf pro. What he does off the golf course is none of our business.

  • Comment number 22.

    Anyone who expects Woods to "come clean" is nothing more than a Tabloid Junkie or a media personality with their own agenda. The so-called tabloids can do all they want to batter his image, because that's what they do and at the end it's all about them making money. Any talk of his image getting a battering is all a concoction of the media, their job is to influence opinion, increase readership, listening or viewing figures. The moment he's back to doing what he does best all will be forgotten and these same individuals will be fawning over him like there’s no tomorrow. Tiger is adored because of his ability in the golfing arena; his marketability is based on the fact that he's a great golfer, no scratch that, the greatest golfer to have ever played the game. He doesn't flog products telling you he's the best human being in the world, the best husband, father or whatever you want to believe. No doubt, his sponsors will be rubbing their hands with glee following all this “negative” publicity. What harm did it do the likes of Muhammad Ali, David Beckham, Michael Jordan, Michael Schumacher and to lesser degrees Rooney and Gerrard amongst many others when they erred.... nothing! The sponsors realise Tiger has a legion of willing fans who are gullible enough to believe if they own a razor blade, a watch, a game or a piece of sports wear they can share in a part of, if not, almost become their golfing idol. So people need to get real, Woods is a role model for what he achieves in the sports arena and anyone seeking more than that should turn to a proper religion for worship. Tiger should be allowed to do his thing and heal in private, his life away from the sporting arena is really none of our business and those who seek more responsibility from him need to question who they really take as "real role models" for themselves or their kids.

  • Comment number 23.

    Anyone who expects Woods to "come clean" is nothing more than a Tabloid Junkie or a media personality with their own agenda. The so-called tabloids can do all they want to batter his image, because that's what they do and at the end it's all about them making money. Any talk of his image getting a battering is all a concoction of the media, their job is to influence opinion, increase readership, listening or viewing figures. The moment he's back to doing what he does best all will be forgotten and these same individuals will be fawning over him like there’s no tomorrow. Tiger is adored because of his ability in the golfing arena; his marketability is based on the fact that he's a great golfer, no scratch that, the greatest golfer to have ever played the game. He doesn't flog products telling you he's the best human being in the world, the best husband, father or whatever you want to believe. No doubt, his sponsors will be rubbing their hands with glee following all this “negative” publicity. What harm did it do the likes of Muhammad Ali, David Beckham, Michael Jordan, Michael Schumacher and to lesser degrees Rooney and Gerrard amongst many others when they erred.... nothing! The sponsors realise Tiger has a legion of willing fans who are gullible enough to believe if they own a razor blade, a watch, a game or a piece of sports wear they can share in a part of, if not, almost become their golfing idol. So people need to get real, Woods is a role model for what he achieves in the sports arena and anyone seeking more than that should turn to a proper religion for worship. Tiger should be allowed to do his thing and heal in private, his life away from the sporting arena is really none of our business and those who seek more responsibility from him need to question who they really take as "role models" for themselves or their kids.
    My question is since when did issues of monogamy become sports news?

  • Comment number 24.

    Sanctimonious twaddle. Woods might be a billionairre but he is just a lucky man who gets paid to play sport. What he does in his private life is even more edious. Surely, there are more important things to discuss.

  • Comment number 25.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 26.

    I do not know what all the fuss is about Tiger Woods is a fair player of the the game of golf BUT he is by no means the best at all so lets clear that one up straight away

    This fine he recieved for dangerous driving what a joke small pocket change to him these fines need to reflect the means of the person .

    As for the comment he is only human total hogwash is my response ,He is supposed to be someone that younger people can look up to and esteeme to become .

    Almost anyone that plays enough for as many years as he has will become good darn good in fact .

    There are a lot of us out here in the real world that would not complain if the Tiger Woods thing just fizzeled out he is not a good ambasadour for the game , Golf is after all a game of etiquette almost as much as the skills of the game (i know there are the modern players with NO etiquette that spit all over the course with bad attitude no manners ect but do we need them i think NOT) and as for this absolutley stupid call of " In the hole " every single time this thing hits a ball well i think it is an opening for a dissaplinery hearing and a fine every single time it happens .

    I am a fairly new player to the game but a Staunch believer in the true etiquette of the game and rules is rules .

    Tiger Woods was caught with his kegs round his proverbial ankles he needs to be made to pay the price just like the rest of would have to , The fact he is a publicly recognised figure makes it even more important he conducts his life in a clean manner if his wife caught him out tough suck it in .

    It is not clear Who hit him with one of his Golf clubs clearley someone did he certainly did not do it in the incident ( i will not call it an accident because i do not believe it was it was a contriveance) this is getting to sound like the all to familiar tales you hear about footballers they think they can get away with everything brcause they are famous this is why football is a hooligans game and exactly why we must strive to ensure the etiquette of the game of Golf is not lost at all

  • Comment number 27.

    I do love it that sportsman can seemingley do whatever they like, but as long as they're talented at their sport, they're still 'great men!' Im not judging him yet until the truth comes out, if it ever does, but it franky annoys me that sports journalists (usually male) are always happy to gloss over these 'indescretions' Im assuming Tiger and this journalist is talking about Tigers numerous alledged affairs and I think its fantastic how he believes this will actually improve his reptation and make him more human (whatever that means!)

    Facts are - Tiger is a global superstar who has enjoyed the trappings of fame and all the wealth that has brought him. He has treated his family poorly, which will obviously make global news. I for one think of him worse for that, not better!!!!

    Despite all this, hes more than happy to behave how he likes as I honestly dont care Im sure his sponsors may have a different opinion though

  • Comment number 28.

    "Sanctimonious twaddle. Woods might be a billionairre but he is just a lucky man who gets paid to play sport. What he does in his private life is even more edious. Surely, there are more important things to discuss."
    - Brian Johnson

    Well, you're on the wrong blog mate - Afghan War Discussion here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/newsnight/markurban/

    Honestly, the amount of "better stuff to talk about" guff thats floating around this story is really irritating me. It's blindingly obvious that there are most important issues to discuss. Are we supposed to just sit around all day talking about war and famine?

  • Comment number 29.

    I don't like the way people now appear to think that long-term cheating on your wife is not such a big deal anymore: "Everybody errs", etc. No, actually. Not everybody would dream of cheating on their wife. It was exactly the same with David Letterman, he just treated it as a joke, and the media just said "Good old Dave". There was absolutely no sympathy for his wife. Well, I feel dreadfully sorry for Tiger Woods's wife. Someone has to.

  • Comment number 30.

    The reputation of Tiger Woods has hardly been battered.

    The BBC fawns on an almost daily basis over another famous sportsman who has been in the same territory as Woods - why the difference in approach?

  • Comment number 31.

    Tiger Woods is striving to be a better person and the husband and father his family deserves. So says his second post-crash statement issued amid a flurry of tabloid claims about his private life.

    The world's top golfer has issued a plea for privacy and is dismayed at realising "the full extent of what tabloid scrutiny really means."

    This annoys me hugely. People like Tiger act as if the money and the fame are their right. He was my favourite sportsman before this precisely because he was human. The way he has treated his family and children in particular isn't against the law, so what? It is still a scummy and low thing to do, and his reputation should suffer.

    And also, he didn't 'bring athleticism to golf' as Greg Norman did that.

    26. At 08:53am on 03 Dec 2009, Pete wrote:
    I do not know what all the fuss is about Tiger Woods is a fair player of the the game of golf BUT he is by no means the best at all so lets clear that one up straight away

    This is from a non-golf fan, i assume. Best of the current generation, only one or two all time that may compare.

  • Comment number 32.

    29. At 09:34am on 03 Dec 2009, Andrew Thomas wrote:
    I don't like the way people now appear to think that long-term cheating on your wife is not such a big deal anymore: "Everybody errs", etc. No, actually. Not everybody would dream of cheating on their wife. It was exactly the same with David Letterman, he just treated it as a joke, and the media just said "Good old Dave". There was absolutely no sympathy for his wife. Well, I feel dreadfully sorry for Tiger Woods's wife. Someone has to.

    i totally agree, mate. they act like scum then laugh it off, and we think it's ok. i don't cheat.

    also, spot on from theTomTyke.

  • Comment number 33.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 34.

    Who cares, some of us have real problems and issues. Most of you here are not perfect either. The guy smacked a fire hydrant outside his house, and all anyone can do is speculate, like are there green men on mars? This is all nuts.

  • Comment number 35.

    Man runs off the road and into a fire hydrant/tree. Fact.
    Man commits "transgressions". Fact.

    How is this still a story? Can we all please move on?

  • Comment number 36.

    33. At 09:58am on 03 Dec 2009, Researcher 6204321 wrote:

    spot on mate. still a great golfer, but...

  • Comment number 37.

    Other golfers with serial marital problems get knighthoods - why pick on Woods whilst fawning on the others?

  • Comment number 38.

    No. 25 Your comment is as pointless as this article and more to the point stupid. On the story, who actually cares? the guy can still putt right?? Go to church for family values, why do some people expect sports stars to set the example?

  • Comment number 39.

    25. At 08:53am on 03 Dec 2009, hatcher wrote:
    hands off tiger"s personal life.
    unfortunate nobody will allow a black man to be on top in any field.(so far only exception is obama)
    they killed Micheal Jackson,OJ Simpson etc etc.
    pl leave tiger alone.all these girls and media wants cheap publicity and money.they attach when somebody in vulnerable.
    real bloodsuckers.


    is this serious?

  • Comment number 40.

    37. At 10:09am on 03 Dec 2009, Researcher 4790105 wrote:
    Other golfers with serial marital problems get knighthoods - why pick on Woods whilst fawning on the others?

    who?

  • Comment number 41.

    @40

    If you can't work it out, you're pretty dense.

  • Comment number 42.

    thanks, i normally don't read gossip columns, but nice put down.

    Faldo?

  • Comment number 43.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 44.

    On an incredibly shallow and superficial note; just how good looking does this cocktail waitress need to be for him to cheat on Elin??!!

    Just thought I'd bring it down a notch or two!! Sorry...

  • Comment number 45.

    tiger woods is a great golfer and the media have to leave his family alone and to let him get his life back.

  • Comment number 46.

    43. At 10:22am on 03 Dec 2009, Ejix wrote:
    Tiger Woods is just human regardless of his talent as a great golf player. Since we live in a world where we unnecessary hold up athletes because of their talent and success, we have inadvertently placed higher values and expectations that should NOT be.

    so you think it is unrealistic for a man to be faithful to his wife? feel bad for your family.

  • Comment number 47.

    How stupid is this guy??
    He's a wealthy man with a lot to lose. Come on - did he really think he could play away from home with what seems to be more than one girl and it stay a secret? Is he a complete idiot?
    If you play with fire, you'll get burnt sooner or later. The sad thing is here that the person to whom the greatest hurt has been caused is his wife, who would appear to having been playing the game fair and square...
    I guess millions in the bank, a stunningly beautiful wife, 2 young kids and your life's passion as a job just isn't enough for some people (!!) I just hope for his wife and children's sake she manages to find it in her heart to forgive him and that he earns that forgiveness, as otherwise the kids will suffer.
    Shrugging this off as 'he's only human' completely fails to acknowledge the magnitude of what he's done and more importantly it's impact to others. There's a huge difference between being human and being a complete fool...

  • Comment number 48.

    45. At 10:25am on 03 Dec 2009, Stuart wrote:
    tiger woods is a great golfer and the media have to leave his family alone and to let him get his life back.

    but he brought this on himself by cheating and then crashing. it is too easy to pretend the media are to blame, but he'd be fine with using them to promote his tournament/book/clubs etc.

  • Comment number 49.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 50.

    Certainly a huge media over-reaction. Loads of other sportsmen throughout history have played away from home. Certainly his private life is none of our business. However, if you've made over £1bn through being in the public eye, you can't expect people not to be interested in tittle-tattle.
    Tiger's most likely to be hurt where it hurts him most - in his wallet.
    Unless he placates his wife it's gonna make the divorces of McCartney, Cleese et al look like peanuts.

  • Comment number 51.

    I feel we have to imagine ourself in his position before we can judge him. If you were rich and famous and had pretty girls throwing themselves at you. it would be tempting. So he was tempted, acted on it and was caught. he is human after all.
    Is it his fault that sponsors are falling over each other to pay him millions? Sure he has made a huge amount of money but it seems to be forgotten he gives quite a bit back with his foundation.
    To err is human to forgive, divine.

  • Comment number 52.

    so, why do these single women target millionaire married with children sportsmen - oh yes - the money - just one of the hazards of the game Tiger - just keep the wood in the bags!

  • Comment number 53.

    While watching the news about Tiger and his marriage troubles, I am wondering what the fuss is about. The Gillette ads only concentrated on him as a golfer and as teh ads and any other product endorsement did not include his family, so he can't be accused of making false representation. I think people, essentially only really see him as an outstanding sportsman and golfer.

    Yes, as he is in the public eye, his life will always be under media scrutiny and any personal problems, if found out, will be a topic for discussion but just as he has a right to some level of privacy, he can be used as an example of 'yes, famous people, just as non-famous people, do have problems in their personal relationships'. And I would like to think that the public are wise enough to come to a similar conclusion. Tiger Woods can still be viewed as a great sportsman regardless of personal events in his life.

  • Comment number 54.

    Vespa: "tiger you do the crime you do the time, welcome to the world the rest of us live in"
    Has anybody recently reported on transgressions in Vespa's private life? I'm getting mighty curious about that.
    And as far as razorblades are concerned, what with Henry's handball we're now probably just waiting for Roger Federer to slip up in some major way...

  • Comment number 55.

    I can't believe this story is getting THAT much coverage.

    Personally, I hate talking about who cheated on whom. I find that meaningless gossip, no matter who you are.

    This isn't new to me; My own math teacher cheated on his wife (a teacher at the same school) with my classmate. My cousin, who's under the roof of our house, used to cheat on her estranged husband (and the husband did the same in retaliation). Kobe Bryant did it. Letterman too. Etc. Etc. Not a new thing to me! But it doesn't impress me one bit.

    So IF Tiger did it, IF (waiting for the woman from the nightclub's statement), it's not the newest thing in the world. Neither is it acceptable behaviour.

    I know Tiger the golfer. What he does behind the scenes is his life. Talk about his swing, or his putter, or his biz ventures. He's human, so just drop it. You can't have a perfect person.

  • Comment number 56.

    I see my earlier comment was removed....I would just like to say on that matter....

    I have let my family down and I regret those transgressions with all of my heart. I have not been true to my values and the behaviour my family deserves.
    I am not without faults and I am far short of perfect. I am dealing with my behaviour and personal failings behind closed doors with my family. Those feelings should be shared by us alone.

    phew, that should do it :-)

  • Comment number 57.

    55. At 11:02am on 03 Dec 2009, Lagellerotumblero wrote:

    why do all these people think that only perfect people are faithfull. ONLY LIARS CHEAT. you can be imperfect without being unfaithful. i'm not perfect, but i draw a line, and the reason this gets coverage is BECAUSE HE HAS TWO YOUNG CHILDREN and anyone who cheats under those circs is scum for doing so.

    you are all right, it makes him no less of a golfer, but he is less of a man, as are all other men who cheat. they do not deserve respect, or to be believed, as they are proven liars.

  • Comment number 58.

    "At 08:53am on 03 Dec 2009, Pete wrote:

    I do not know what all the fuss is about Tiger Woods is a fair player of the the game of golf BUT he is by no means the best at all so lets clear that one up straight away

    This fine he recieved for dangerous driving what a joke small pocket change to him these fines need to reflect the means of the person . "

    These have to be 2 of the most ridiculous comments I have ever read.

    Firstly, Tiger Woods IS world number 1 FACT! That would therefore suggest he is the best! He is also closing in on the all time record held my Mr. Nicklaus, something I still believe he will achieve. Further, you must put that in the context of the game, and without doubt Tiger faces far more competition from his fellow competitors than Jack did all those years ago (and I do not wish to take anything away from Jack Nicklaus whatsoever).

    Secondly, the fact that someone is succesful through unbelievable hard work and dedication to his/her profession (whether it be sport or otherwise), does not mean that they should be more heavily punished for any wrong doings they commit. That is a ridiculous, communist comment and clearly coming from someone with a rather large chip on their shoulder, not only about the success of Tiger Woods (the worlds greatest golfer) but also about their own position in society/ with their own wealth. Jealousy!

  • Comment number 59.

    Rob - thes first bit is true, but what do you mean by jealousy? Tiger cheated, and has two small children. Are you defending this?

  • Comment number 60.

    Far from it, I can not condone what he has done it that respect, but I stil believe it is none of our business, and his private life should remain private and we should continue to admire (I hope) what he does on the course!

  • Comment number 61.

    Not making excuses for Tiger but how much pressure is put on him and how much does he put on himself before something snaps. obviously he maintains his cool whilst in public but this goes to show that he is susceptible to pressure. Lets hope he patches up with his family. All i can say is God help everyone else because i think he will come out fighting like never before and the only way he can prove himself is on the golf course. a tiger slam next year?

  • Comment number 62.

    I don't understand many of the comments on this page about Tiger's sponsors taking a possible 'dim view' of his transgressions, and that it is the clean-cut image that inflates his sponsorship deals. That's rubbish and not how the business world works, which is what we are talking about here. Nike would not pay Tiger the same sums of money if he was ranked 10th in the world on a regular basis, however much of a clean-cut role model he is. I don't see Ross Fisher pulling in the same pay cheques! They pay because he is the best, and kids and adults will buy Nike clubs, shirts, and shoes because that's what 'the best' uses. It really has very little to do with his clean-cut image, and let's be honest, spitting, swearing and demonstrating petulance on the golf course is not really my definition of 'clean cut' That's like saying companies sponsor Miguel Angel Jimenez because of his healthy living!

    Remember Kate Moss? As long as Woods is out there at number one his sponsors won't bat an eyelid.

    Iain makes a good point that sports fans are not that judgemental or bothered. All we care about is how he swings the golf club, and I know that's all my sons care about, so let's not pretend that the Head of Sponsorship at Nike is having sleepless nights.........or if they are its only about Lee Westwood's inevitable rise to number 1 in the next couple of years!

  • Comment number 63.

    60. At 11:30am on 03 Dec 2009, Roggy wrote:
    Far from it, I can not condone what he has done it that respect, but I stil believe it is none of our business, and his private life should remain private and we should continue to admire (I hope) what he does on the course!

    i disagree. i work in the media an the people who use this argument about their private life are hypocrites. they use the media for their own purposes, and are surprised when they get bitten.

    he's got a SUPERYACHT called Privacy! IRONIC, and IDIOTIC.

  • Comment number 64.

    I have some sympathy for Tiger in all of this, having speculation about his private life being plastered over the tabloids.

    But I think this speaks volumes about the type of people who buy and read this trash - doesn't matter who the celeb is, the masses want to know every minute detail of their lives. It just goes to show how shallow and boring their own lives must be.

    For sure, he is arguably the greatest golfer of all time. However, he must start to realise that without the goodwill of the fans, he risks becoming just another faceless player. He is excused by the media for ignoring the public as he is "focussed" or "in the zone" when he plays. But the scowling when he's not playing his best, the spitting which he seems to do a lot of these days, totally ignoring autograph hunters, and the under the breath swearing, may ultimately cost him many fans.

    I understand the enormous pressure he must be under, with everybody wanting a piece of him. But if he wants to be 'human', he needs to start showing human touches.

  • Comment number 65.

    I'm sorry, but is this really any of our business. What Tiger does in his private life is his business. The only reason we are hearing this is because of a story in the "National Inquirer" a weekly celebrity news magazine with a shady reputation when it comes to dealing with facts. Since when have we allowed a publication like that to dictate what is and is news worthy.

    I am not here to defend Tiger Woods, I am just here to defend peoples rights to privacy. There are those in today's media who would have us think that one gives up their right to privacy completely onces they become famous. I do not agree with that. I do not believe that somebody has to surrender their entire private life just to become a celebrity. Forty years ago, we had celebrities but nobody delved into their private lives too closely. Part of it was because we really didn't want to know what they did behind closed doors and part of we understood and respected their right to privacy. Whatever they did was private matter between them, their families and their god and nobody else. I see no reason why that standard should not hold.

    Somewhere along the way, I think it was around the time of Watergate, the media thought that they could make money reporting scandels. They didn't care whether or not the scandel had any importance or any significance to peoples everyday life. Now I am not going to compare Watergate to what happened to Tiger Woods. the former was of great national importances and exposeed what happens when you put someone of questionable mental capabilities in charge of the most powerful nation on earth, while the latter is simply about sex. Not that there is anything wrong with sex. It is simply that I don't believe the public needs to know who is and isn't having it with whom.

    This scandel has nothing to do with Sports. It has nothing to do with Golf. Infact, Mr. Carter I am saying I don't think the BBC should be covering this story because it isn't newsworthy. Tiger Woods had an extramarital affair. Who cares, it's NONE of our business. It is absolutely NONE of our Business. WE shouldn't act as voyuers into the lives of other people. If they wish to discuss this with John Q Public, that is their business. Otherwise, it is none of ours. Lets just leave Tiger alone.

  • Comment number 66.

    Somewhere along the way, I think it was around the time of Watergate, the media thought that they could make money reporting scandels. They didn't care whether or not the scandel had any importance or any significance to peoples everyday life.

    But media is entertainment. You understand this?

    SCANDAL, not SCANDEL

  • Comment number 67.

    captainlazytim,

    If anyone is looking for moral guidance from you I suggest a glance at your blogging history. It rules you out.

  • Comment number 68.

    "i work in the media an(d) the people who use this argument about their private life are hypocrites. they use the media for their own purposes, and are surprised when they get bitten."

    Use capitals when appropriate and spell check your own work before lambasting others. Which part of the media do you work in?

  • Comment number 69.

    What an absurd concept. Cheating on your wife with multiple tramps could make you more likeable? What a world we live in.

    Tiger Woods in my opinion is the greatest golfer in history.We seem however unable to distinguish between good and bad behaviours because he is seen as a product.

    Keep his private life private? Come on thats not gonna happen its 2009 and hes the highest profile sportsman in the world. He knew what he was doing and if he thought it would'nt eventually get out he must be stupid.

    This incident will not detract one bit for me from the enjoyment of watching him play . However please let us not try and make a virtue of his actions just because of his celebrity and status. If we do we let down his wife and children and every other person in similar situations who are hurt and wronged

  • Comment number 70.

    I simply cannot understand why the world is slobbering over this guy. He has a rotten temper, foul mouth, unlike most athletes, rather than gracious in defeat and humble in victory, he is whiny when he loses and behaves as though he was expected to win when he wins and what of it? I can't remember any laudatory comments about his competition. Miserable sportsmanship but then, maybe I'm too old to appreciate today's athletic heroes who seem to be admired for their egocentricity as much as for their skills.

    Now we find he's a notorious philanderer and has been for a long time. Dang-near took out the neighborhood, if you review the police map of his brief Cadillac SUV excursion. He's lucky he hit the tree, had he made it out on the highway, he might have killed somebody.

    Reading through this blog, there are so many laudatory comments, we need to ask ourselves, what exactly are we admiring this person for? He hits a great golfball? Is that it?

  • Comment number 71.

    How does Gallacher know how Woods will be affected? I don't remember him crashing into a tree, or the National Enquirer running an exposé about him.
    I don't seem to remember him also having the mental resolve needed to win a Major or two either.

  • Comment number 72.

    He's still the gr8est golfer in the Mordern era.

    Has an awesome record and no amount of dirt can dent that record

    Common Tiger

  • Comment number 73.

    68. At 12:02pm on 03 Dec 2009, Researcher 4790105 wrote:

    thanks for the tips. i'd like to hear the amoral views that you've found me offering on these pages.

  • Comment number 74.

    Why is it ok for Woods to cheat on his wife? It shouldn't be ok - the man has everything a 33-year-old could ask for, yet it still isn't enough. I do think we should forgive but we shouldn't forget - not yet anyway. The man is a genius but cheating isn't ok.

    And for all those saying 'why is this still news' etc. Well this story is still new, and its still newsworthy. The public do have a right to know about this sort of thing. It may be his private life and of course we should respect that, but if one of our sporting stars is not being true to their image, we deserve to know about it.

  • Comment number 75.

    Is cheating on your wife worse or more forgiveable then cheating in the sport itself? I wonder who feels worse, Tiger or Thierry and who of the two will be forgiven first?

  • Comment number 76.

    Researcher 4790105

    Sorry, it isn't true that i'd like you to point out my morality, i couldn't care less. This isn't personal.

    My anger stems from the fact that he is acting like a victim of the media, who have helped his run to $1bn, when he has children and a wife that he didn't consider. Yes, it is sad that this is such big news, but it is sadder that he cannot even maintain a normal level of fidelity.

  • Comment number 77.

    The Gillette boys have had a tough time recently: Thierry Henry's handball...now Tiger's "transgressions". I wonder if Mr. Federer is going to be extra well-behaved now...

  • Comment number 78.

    The real debate should be whether monogamy is a realistic aspiration for humankind or just another tool of oppression and moral brain washing espoused by right wing sycophants. Rather than persecute Woods lets hope he champions the cause to allow polygamy to be legal, until then let's focus on bigger issues affecting our everyday lives like the state of the economy, Afghanistan and how I can avoid my mum in law for Christmas this year. Tiger's lucky if you ask me, and golf needs him (remember how boring it was in 2008 after the US Open), so can't wait for this furore to blow over and see Tiger doing what he does best!

  • Comment number 79.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 80.

    Tiger, like everyone else, isn't perfect. What he has supposedly done is not something I condone but it's not my business either. Tiger's reported transgressions are a private matter and should be handled as such.

    From a golf perspective, Tiger is still the greatest golfer of all-time and he will one day surpass the majors record that Nicklaus holds.

  • Comment number 81.

    Move along people, nothing to see here. Media leave it alone, Tiger is only human. If YOUR child turned out to be half the man that Tiger is I am sure that you would be proud. I know that I would be more than that................

  • Comment number 82.

    The problem I have with all this is people rushing to internet blogs with this holier than thou attitude. Take your pathetic judgments and shove it up your backside. Nobody knows who you are, so why should they trust your opinions on morality and conducting yourself?

    They then defend their position by saying "oh well he used the media to make his money, he can't complain" - yes, a record tournament champion widely regarded as one of, if not the best to ever play a global sport relied on the media to make him his money.

    God I am fed up of seeing sportsmen on the front pages.

  • Comment number 83.

    Rarely is the phrase "why eat a burger out when you have steak at home" been more appropriate than in this story...$1Bn, two kids and a far prettier wife than any of the alleged dalliances should have been enough to keep his pecker at the door...a great guy and a sporting legend no doubt but he needs to learn his lesson quickly.

  • Comment number 84.

    I can't believe that people seem to think this is 'reasonable' because it portray Mr Woods in a more 'human' light?

    What?!

    What's human about cheating on your wife? Astonishing nonsense.

    He made a huge error. Fine. Don't talk about it. Fine. But don't paint it to be something else.

    A sign of human frailty we should all embrace. Showing Mr Woods to be the normal human being we all want to know and understand.

    What an insult. It's the opposite of humanity. Ask his wife.

  • Comment number 85.

    As such an important public figure, I truly believe he should not be let off so easily. Tiger Woods is someone who young kids look up to. Saying he is only human and that this is alright only tells us the low expectations people have towards human kind. If someone is to be in an open relationship by choice, he-she is free to do as they wish. Once someone makes a comittment, they should stick to it.
    This is the example our children are getting, and far from it only being an example of cheeting, it is an example of not sticking to what you comitt to, and still being praised.

  • Comment number 86.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 87.

    Comment number 79. "He always was and always will be a douche bag".....
    Sorry Graham but what have you done lately? I don't see your name up in lights!

  • Comment number 88.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 89.

    "55. At 11:02am on 03 Dec 2009, Lagellerotumblero wrote:

    you are all right, it makes him no less of a golfer, but he is less of a man, as are all other men who cheat. they do not deserve respect, or to be believed, as they are proven liars."

    I fully agree but hope you meant to say as are all other 'people' who cheat.

  • Comment number 90.

    captainlazytim, What woods gets up to is nobody elses business - he shouldn't have to talk about it in public - nobody else does, unless they are publicly elected officials.

    This guy is good at Golf, so there really is no need to peer into his private life, unless an editor wants to sell his rag with sleeze. What he does has no bearing on the lives of anyone else but his own family.

    How do we know you're whiter than white, anyway?

  • Comment number 91.

    I think Scouser4life is absolutely right, his record is awesome - as he closes in on Jack's 18 majors - and if he surpasses those then surely there can be no further debate about how's the greatest off all time (although it won't stop us I'm sure!?) And it's this, for me, that is central to the whole thing. We love to debate this type of thing - who's the best; who's going to be the next BIG player - Rory?; who's lost their way at the game - and so it goes on. Why are you reading this otherwise? Most of us love a bit of gossip. I think it's shame in many ways because private should mean just that but this is the way of the world now. Joe Cooter makes a good point about the stars of yesteryear getting away with stuff but, Joe, this was before the days of the internet, 24hr news channels, all the paparazzi and so on. Human nature being what it is, our curosity fans the flames and the media feeds this frenzy in return. And the whole thing just spirals and spirals. We can't stop it now, much as some might like to stop these 'invasions' into our star's lives.

    There are some great posts on here (some shockers as well mind you but hey ho) - PremLyfe makes some good points about publicity (any kind negative or positive) can be 'good' at the end of the day. But I do disagree with his point that 'this will all be forgotten'. Unfortunately, this story will not. It will be dredged up for evermore (if only because the 'driving into the trees' gag is a cheap one, but it's too good a strap line for the tabloids etc to miss!) I think this will be a real stain on his character; which up to now has been pretty blemish-free. I say 'unfortunately' because, yes, Tiger himself has 'trangressed' but, without wishing to make light of his 'sins', as others have commented, nobody is perfect - yes he cusses, he spits, he's not the best loser etc etc. I mean its unfortunate for his wife and his kids and the impact this will have on them. Hopefully they can move on - in private - but the media will always remind him and us (and them) about it. He has made his fortune - transforming the game in many ways as Iain Carter says - and his fans have played a huge part in creating this wealth for him and the circus that surrounds him (anyone who's ever been to a tournament and seen the masses that follow him will testify to this). He must therefore expect huge attention from his fans when something like this happens and we do want information. However, in my view, the 'innocent parties' in all this - Elin and his kids - deserve some respect and some time to themselves and we should include Tiger in this. Back off for a while to let them sort out their future. Yeah, like that's gonna happen (!?) but it is this future - Toger's future - that really intrigues me. Forget the past, the non-story of the cocktail waitress etc.

    As Iain says, course-wise, 2010 sets up perfectly for Tiger to win at least 3 out of the 4 majors but will he? How will he react to this dent in his crown? He has - as leenorthwood points out (nice post mate!) - got a resurgent Lee Westwood to contend with (come on Westy!) - not to mention Rory and (no-so-)big Phil all the others. What about a bounceback from big Darren too - love to see that!?

    Fascinating and we all love it - we know we do. Why else is this the most posted-to golf blog I've ever seen on here -- the Tiger factor, that's why?! I can't wait to see how he shapes up next season - hopefully with all this mess behind him. Bring it on!!

    Now you'll have to excuse me, I'm off to buy some razor blades ... ; - )



  • Comment number 92.

    Comment 91 by Dibbdobbs65 : "The non-story of the cocktail waitress etc".
    Equates to their 15 minutes of fame.

  • Comment number 93.

    Comment 4. SlyRebirth wrote:

    "Nobody's perfect - absolutely nobody is perfect - but if you're going to amass a fortune on protraying a certain set of values, then live up to them, but don't expect to eat your cake and have it. That attitude is utterly offensive, in my mind."

    Absolutely right. People, in my opinion, can do what they want with their lives but to present a false image in order to fleece millions of dollars from the public is nothing short of a con.

    Also, I would like to see how the PGA Tour will respond to this. John Daly (the working mans outsider on the PGA Tour) was banned from the Tour for 6 months about a year or so ago after pictures of him appeared in a tabloid of him getting drunk and falling over. They deemed that he brought the PGA Tour into disrepute.

    Now we will see what the PGA Tour think is more morally disreputable - getting drunk and falling over, or serial adultery.

    I fear I know already what the answer will be in the money centred, snobbish, generally Republican world of American golf.

  • Comment number 94.

    Jason, yep, of course.

    I got modded for saying bad things about people who accused me of being holier-than-thou.

    I don't cheat, but if i did no-one would care. Having said that, if i get a hole-in-one on sunday (golf) then i won't be on Sky Sports and get millions from Nike, so it cuts both ways.

    He acted very poorly, and i wonder if it would had happened if his Dad were still alive, whether he has been managed to such an extent that he is somewhat naive.

    He deserves to lose face, golfer or otherwise. He abused the fame and money.

    Also, v interesting point made here about the type of women he approaches. Probably why it got modded. Too interesting

  • Comment number 95.

    90. At 1:48pm on 03 Dec 2009, U11006724 wrote:
    captainlazytim, What woods gets up to is nobody elses business - he shouldn't have to talk about it in public - nobody else does, unless they are publicly elected officials.

    This guy is good at Golf, so there really is no need to peer into his private life, unless an editor wants to sell his rag with sleeze. What he does has no bearing on the lives of anyone else but his own family.

    How do we know you're whiter than white, anyway?

    you don't, but i can't ring up a paper and say what i like and see it published. i don't get flown around the world by sponsors.

    he is good, and the wholesome image has nothing to do. for the record, i will still admire the way he plays, whilst finding it harder to cheer for him. but it is wrong to say, he's a golfer, so let's not talk about anything else.' he's a role model, so he has a responsibilty, he's a powerful man, and represents many companies. If he wanted the quiet life he should have retired when he had enough cash.

  • Comment number 96.

    BrawScot : Comment 93.... You are spot one with this one. "I fear I know already what the answer will be in the money centred, snobbish, generally Republican world of American golf."........... How many years was it before Tiger Woods was allowed to play on the greens in America or throughout the world because he is a black man? He will probably be PRESIDENT one day, stranger things have happened!

  • Comment number 97.

    Comment 91 by Dibbdobbs65 : "I'm off to buy some razor blades"

    Steady on fella - no need for such drastic action!!!

  • Comment number 98.

    Comment 93 by BrawScot:

    Tend to agree though Daly was getting a bit out of hand at one point.
    Still a helluva player though and would love to see him back among the contenders again. The game needs a few 'characters' as I personally find the USPGA tour a trifle dull.

  • Comment number 99.

    58. At 11:23am on 03 Dec 2009, Roggy wrote:

    ... in the context of the game, and without doubt Tiger faces far more competition from his fellow competitors than Jack did all those years ago (and I do not wish to take anything away from Jack Nicklaus whatsoever).

    Nicklaus finished second to players such as Palmer, Player, Trevino, Watson, Miller. All serial major winners, and better players than the current crop Tiger plays against!

    Tiger may become the most successful golfer of all time, but he will never be the "greatest golfer". Despite his skill with a golf club, he doesn't have the class. His on course demeanour and current off-course news stand against him.

    Don't feel sorry for Tiger. He brought this upon himself by REPEATEDLY cheating on his wife. It's Elin and the kids who deserve our sympathy.

  • Comment number 100.

    This will not go away. The PGA has a squeaky clean image and this will tarnish it. Tiger takes millions from Buick to promote their cars and owns 2 Cadillacs as his family vehicles? Like many men caught cheating he went into "deny mode" until the cocktail waitress went to the tabloids with 300 text messages and a voice message on her phone. His PR people will be busy spinning stories for months to come. Professional golf has taken a big slap in the face from their marquee player.

 

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