Chasing the Golden Bear
Even his most diehard haters have to admit that the sight of Tiger Woods hugging his young son after winning the Masters last month was enough to bring a lump to the throat.
After all, this is a guy who’s incurred his share of ugly headlines – some of them self-inflicted – in the last decade: serial infidelity, a divorce, an embarrassing DUI arrest, injuries and finally, a lot of futility on the golf course. So his April victory at Augusta National, his first major title in 11 years and only his second win in the last six, seemed to put the coda to a very forgettable chapter of his life.
Now, the 43-year-old California native seeks to make it two majors in a row in the 2019 PGA Championship, which airs Thursday through Sunday, May 16-19, on TNT and CBS, from the Black Course at Bethpage State Park on New York’s Long Island.
Woods has had some success at Bethpage Black, considered one of the most challenging public courses in the world. His best outing was his wire-to-wire victory in the 2002 U.S. Open, in which he was the only player to shoot under par. There was also a sixth place finish in the ’06 U.S. Open and a frustrating 2012 performance at The Barclays, where he fought through knee and back problems to finish 38th.
This week, he’ll have the best golfers in the world to contend with – among them Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy, Matt Kuchar, Xander Schauffele and defending tournament champ Brooks Koepka – as he seeks his 16th career major championship, which would put him two behind Jack Nicklaus’ all-time record of 18.
Full name: Eldrick Tont “Tiger” Woods
Birth date: Dec. 30, 1975
Birthplace: Cypress, Calif.
Height/weight: 6 feet, 1 inch/185 pounds
College: Stanford University
Turned pro: 1996
Honors and achievements: Five-time Masters champion (1997, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2019); three-time U.S. Open champion (2000, 2002, 2008); three-time British Open champion (2000, 2005, 2006); four-time PGA Championship champ (1999, 2000, 2006, 2007); 11-time PGA Tour Player of the Year; 10-time PGA Tour leading money winner; 1996 PGA Tour Rookie of the Year; 81 PGA Tour victories; 41 European Tour victories