Tiger Woods' successes and struggles: A timeline of events

From public scandals to historic comebacks, professional golfer Tiger Woods has continued to make headlines over the years.

At one point, roughly a year ago, Woods wasn't sure if he would ever step on the course again. He was recovering from a serious lower back injury – the fourth in his career – and admitted he found it difficult at times to get off the couch.

But after a brief hiatus from the sport, Woods was able to lift his arms in celebration this weekend as he marked the 80th victory of his PGA Tour career, his first since the 2013 Bridgestone Invitational.


While Woods has celebrated many professional achievements, the golf star has also been open about some of his personal struggles. Here's a timeline of specific events that have impacted his life and career.

September 2018

Woods won the PGA Tour once again.

Woods shot a one-over par 71 at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta to wrap up a two-shot victory over Billy Horschel at the season-ending Tour Championship.

"It was a grind out there," Woods said. "I loved every bit of it."

August 2018

Woods closed with a 64 – his lowest final round ever in a major – at the 100th PGA Championship, becoming runner-up to Brooks Koepka.

September 2018 

Woods was announced as a captain's pick for the Ryder Cup on Sept. 4, 2018, his first playing appearance since 2012.

October 2017

Woods pleaded guilty to a charge of reckless driving on Oct. 27, 2017. He had been arrested in May after police found him asleep at the wheel of his car alongside a road in Florida. He was suspected of driving under the influence, police said.

Woods agreed to take part in a 12-month probation program that involved community service, DUI school, drug testing, and possible treatment in order to avoid a conviction.

Woods took "full responsibility" for his actions, the athlete said in a statement shortly after his arrest.

"I want the public to know that alcohol was not involved," he said at the time. "What happened was an unexpected reaction to prescribed medications. I didn't realize the mix of medications had affected me so strongly."

May 2017

Police in Jupiter, Fla., found Woods sleeping in his parked car, which was running, Fox News reported. Woods exhibited "slurred, mumbled speech" and told police he'd taken some prescriptions, a police report said.

He experienced difficulty with a field sobriety test, according to the report. Tests didn't reveal alcohol in the golfer's system, it said. Woods was arrested and briefly jailed in Jupiter on suspicion of DUI. Woods spent nearly four hours in the Palm Beach County Jail. He was released on his own recognizance.

April 2017

Woods had a fourth back surgery to fuse discs in his lower back.

"It has been just over a month since I underwent fusion surgery on my back, and it is hard to express how much better I feel," Woods said on his website on May 24. "It was instant nerve relief. I haven't felt this good in years."

February 2017

Woods shot 77 in the opening round of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic. The golfer withdrew one day later with back spasms.

December 2016

Woods competed for the first time in 15 months at the unofficial Hero World Challenge, which was held in the Bahamas. He finished 15th out of 18 players.

September 2015

After missing the cut in three of the four majors, Woods had a second back surgery. He followed that up with a third back surgery in October 2015 to relieve discomfort.

May 2015

Vonn and Woods announced their split.

"I will always admire and respect Tiger," Vonn wrote on Facebook. "He and his beautiful family will always hold a special place in my heart."

"Unfortunately, we lead very hectic lives and are both competing in demanding sports," Woods said on his website. "It's difficult to spend time together."

April 2014

Woods had back surgery one week before the Masters. He missed Augusta National for the first time.

March 2013

Both Woods and Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn announced that they were dating.

"Lindsey and I have been friends for some time, but over the last few months we have become very close and are now dating," Woods revealed on Facebook.

March 2012

Woods won the Arnold Palmer Invitational for his first PGA Tour victory since the scandal in his personal life.

May 2011

Woods withdrew from The Players Championship and took a nearly three-month break from golfing.

August 2010

His divorce from Nordegren was finalized.

"We are sad that our marriage is over and we wish each other the very best for the future," Nordegren and Woods said in a statement at the time. "While we are no longer married, we are the parents of two wonderful children and their happiness has been, and will always be, of paramount importance to both of us."

February 2010

"I was unfaithful. I had affairs. I cheated," Woods said in an apology. "What I did is not acceptable. And I am the only person to blame."

He did not return to golf until the Masters in April 2010.

December 2009 

"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," the golfer wrote online. "I want to say again to everyone that I am profoundly sorry and that I ask forgiveness."

That month, Nordegren also reportedly moved out of the couple's home.

Woods lost major sponsorship endorsements, and he spent 45 days in a sex addiction clinic, which he left in early February 2010.

November 2009

Woods crashed his SUV into a tree and a fire hydrant outside his Windermere, Florida, home. Nordegren broke the window to get him out, and Woods was later issued a careless driving citation and fined, Sports Illustrated reported.

Over the next few weeks, his personal life unraveled amid reports of multiple extramarital affairs.

February 2009

Nordegren gave birth to the couple's son Charlie.

June 2008

Woods won the U.S. Open in a playoff. He had reconstructive surgery on his left knee to repair the ACL one week later and spent eight months out of the game.

July 2007

Woods ruptured his ACL while running on a golf course after the British Open. He went on to win five of his next six tournaments, including the PGA Championship.

June 2007

Nordegren gave birth to their daughter Samantha in June 2007.

October 2004

Woods married Elin Nordegren, a former model from Sweden. The couple tied the knot in Barbados with approximately 200 family and friends in attendance, People reported at the time.

April 2001

Woods won the Masters to become the only player to hold all four professional majors at the same time.

June 2000

Woods won the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach by 15 shots, making it the biggest margin in major championship history.

April 1997

Woods won the Masters and became its youngest champion at age 21.

Fox News' Samuel Chamberlain and The Associated Press contributed to this report.