Tiger Woods is No. 2 as Westwood Takes Top Spot
he turmoil in his personal life has taken a toll on Tiger Woods. After a reign of more than five years as the world’s number one golfer, Woods has dropped to second behind a player who’s never won a major.
CBS News correspondent Tony Guida reports that when Woods congratulated Lee Westwood at a tournament four weeks ago, he knew Westwood was gunning for his crown. Sunday, after 281 weeks at the top, Woods is no. 1 no longer.
“Tiger clearly has not been the most dominant player in the world for a long, long time,” says CBS Sports’ Jim Nantz.
It’s mostly because Woods took a five-month break from competition this season. He needed time to try to patch his life back together after confessing to a series of extramarital affairs.
“I am deeply sorry for my irresponsible and selfish behavior I engaged in,” Woods said in a press conference.
Elin Woods was having none of it. The couple divorced and Tiger’s game fell apart. He hasn’t finished higher than fourth since.
“It’s hard to play with that kind of pressure,” says golfer Lawrence Elliott.
Inspired by Woods, Elliott took up golf five years ago. He worked hard to make himself a 6 handicap. Elliott thinks Woods will work hard too.
“He’ll be back next year strong as ever,” says Elliott.
For now, the laurels go to Lee Westwood of England, the first European in 16 years to hold golf’s top ranking. He called it the most satisfying achievement of his career.
“The game went younger and it went global,” says Nantz.
Nantz notes Westwood is just one of a new crop of top players who will challenge Woods for supremacy, but Nantz says don’t bet against Woods.
“You never sell Tiger Woods short when it comes to what he’s going to do in golf,” says Nantz.
What Woods does this week at a tournament in Shanghai could put him right back at no. 1.