Eldrick Tont "Tiger" Woods (born December 30, 1975) is an American professional golfer whose achievements to date rank him among the most successful golfers of all time. Formerly the World No. 1, he is the highest-paid professional athlete in the world, having earned an estimated US$90.5 million from winnings and endorsements in 2010.
Woods has won 14 professional major golf championships, the second highest of any male player (Jack Nicklaus leads with 18), and 71 PGA Tour events, third all time behind Sam Snead and Nicklaus. He has more career major wins and career PGA Tour wins than any other active golfer does. He is the youngest player to achieve the career Grand Slam, and the youngest and fastest to win 50 tournaments on tour. Additionally, Woods is only the second golfer, after Jack Nicklaus, to have achieved a career Grand Slam three times. Woods has won 16 World Golf Championships, and won at least one of those events in each of the first 11 years after they began in 1999.
Woods held the number one position in the world rankings for the most consecutive weeks and for the greatest total number of weeks of any other golfer. He has been awarded PGA Player of the Year a record ten times, the Byron Nelson Award for lowest adjusted scoring average a record eight times, and has the record of leading the money list in nine different seasons.
On December 11, 2009, Woods announced he would take an indefinite leave from professional golf to focus on his marriage after he admitted infidelity. His multiple infidelities were revealed by over a dozen women, through many worldwide media sources. Woods returned to competition on April 8, 2010 for the 2010 Masters, after a break lasting 20 weeks.
On October 31, 2010, Woods lost the world number one ranking to Lee Westwood. As of October 17, 2011, Woods is ranked #55 in the world. This is his lowest rank since October 19, 1996, 15 years ago, when he was ranked 61st; he had turned professional in late August 1996. He is currently the #22-ranked American golfer. Since mid-November 2009, shortly before the infidelity scandals began breaking in the media, Woods has been winless worldwide for 23 months, the longest streak without a title of his professional career. He is winless on the PGA Tour since September 2009.
Woods announced via his website on July 6, 2011 that he would miss the 2011 Open Championship, his second straight unplayed major championship, since he was taking time off from competitive golf to heal injuries to his left knee and ankle. On July 20, Woods announced via his website that he was firing his caddy Steve Williams, who had worked for him since 1999; the two had teamed for 13 of Woods' 14 major championships. Williams will now caddy for Australian star Adam Scott. On July 27, Woods announced via his Twitter account that he would return to tournament play on August 4 for the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, following a break of 11 weeks. Woods announced via his website on Sept. 26, 2011 that Joe LaCava would become his permanent caddy; LaCava had most recently caddied for Dustin Johnson, and before that Fred Couples for an extended period.