Tiger Woods Wins First of Four Golf Masters on This Day in 1997

Twenty years ago on April 13, 1997, American athlete Tiger Woods made history, winning one of golf’s most prestigious tournaments, the Masters, in Augusta, Georgia. He became the youngest golfer to win – and he did it by 12 strokes, a record that still stands.

​That day, Woods not only shot a 72-hole score of 18-under-par 270, but he also shattered the Masters record of 271 that Jack Nicklaus and Raymond Floyd had shared. 

By June 1997, Woods was ranked No. 1 in the world.

Two years later, he won eight PGA tournaments, earned a record $6 million in prize money and began a winning streak that eventually tied Ben Hogan’s in 1948, the second-longest in PGA history. 

Much of his success is owed to Tiger’s close relationship to his father, Earl, who coached his prodigal son since childhood.

In June 2000, Woods won his first U.S. Open, considered the most challenging golf tournament in the world. Woods shot a record 12-under-par 272 to finish 15 strokes ahead of his nearest competitors. 

It was considered the greatest professional golf performance in history, surpassing even his 1997 Masters’ triumph and the 1862 showing by Old Tom Morris. 

In July 2000, Woods captured the British Open, and in August the PGA championship. At the age of 24, he was the youngest player ever to win all four major golf titles and just the second to win three majors in a year.

His winning streak slowed in the 2000’s around the time he married Elin Nordegren, a Swedish former model with whom he had two children.

The golfer won his 10th major, the British Open, in 2005. 

His performance fluctuated throughout the rest of the decade as he struggled with a torn ACL. His career took a further hit in 2009 in relation to a car accident outside his Florida home.

Later, several women came forward alleging they had affairs with the famous golfer. Nordegren divorced him in August 2010.

Woods’ last win took place in 2013.  

Woods planned to play throughout 2017, but a nagging back injury forced him to announce last month that he was withdrawing from the 2017 Masters. 

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