Woods on indefinite break

Golfer admits to cheating on his wife; friends support decision

Woods on indefinite break


The world's No 1 golfer made the stunning announcement in his latest posting on his website in which he confessed "infidelity" for the first time, said he was sorry and asked his family, friends and supporters for forgiveness.

Woods, 33, one of the most admired sport personalities on the planet and the married father of two young children, had previously owned up only to "transgressions" in response to multiple media allegations of numerous extramarital flings.

The allegations followed a bizarre, minor early morning car accident outside his Florida home on November 27 that rapidly ballooned into a full-fledged sex scandal that turned his previously unblemished life and career upside down.
"I am deeply aware of the disappointment and hurt that my infidelity has caused to so many people, most of all my wife and children," said Woods.

His previous perfectionist image was a magnet for lucrative sports sponsorships and endorsements, and according to Forbes magazine, he was the first athlete to earn $1 billion, making him one of the world's wealthiest sports figures.
"After much soul searching, I have decided to take an indefinite break from professional golf. I need to focus my attention on being a better husband, father, and person," Woods said.

"I want to say again to everyone that I am profoundly sorry and that I ask forgiveness. It may not be possible to repair the damage I've done, but I want to do my best to try," he added.

The announcement by the greatest golfer of his generation left the world of professional golf reeling, although his closest collaborators expressed understanding.
“It’s great that he’s going to put his family first and work things out,” world number three Steve Stricker said.

“Golf will always be there. He wants to make sure his marriage is right and everything is good on the homefront.

“We’ll sure miss him on tour until he gets things taken care of... Now we’re not sure when he’s coming back. But this sounds good. I hope everything works out for him.”
The US PGA Tour released a statement backing Woods and his decision to step away from the game to deal with the ongoing personal saga that has become global gossip fodder.

“We fully support Tiger’s decision to step away from competitive golf to focus on his family,” the PGA Tour statement said.

“His priorities are where they need to be and we will continue to respect and honor his family’s request for privacy. We look forward to Tiger’s return to the PGA Tour when he determines the time is right for him,” the PGA statement read.
The next three major tournaments -- the Masters in April at Augusta National, the US Open in June at Pebble Beach and the British Open in July at St Andrews -- will all be played on courses upon which Woods has won a major crown.

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