Tiger Woods opened up about his split from girlfriend Lindsey Vonn after three years of dating saying it has been “brutal” and he hasn’t slept for days as it coincides with the anniversary of his father’s death. The golfing legend spoke with candor on the deeply personal topic during a news conference at TPC Sawgrass in Point Vedra Beach in Florida.
Tiger Woods, had recently announced the breakup in a statement on his Web site. For her part, Olympic gold medalist skier Lindsey Vonn had also issued a statement via her Facebook page on the breakup. But this marked the first time he had spoken live on television about the dissolution of what seemingly had been a happy union between two of the world’s most famous sports figures. They had indeed been the model couple for such a long time, it had served to distance Woods’ from his divorce from wife Elin Nordegren, and the scandal of his affairs with multiple women that brought it about.
At the TPC Sawgrass news conference, Woods said of the breakup, “It is rough. There’s no doubt. I’m not going to lie about that. It is tough.”
He also spoke about the ninth anniversary of his father, Earl Woods,’ death from cancer (May 3) and how it had compounded the intensity for him. He said of it, “This three-day window is really hard. I haven’t slept. It’s been these three-days, May 3 and through the 5th.” He went on to call those three days “just brutal on me, and then with obviously what happened on Sunday” — referencing the breakup with Lindsey Vonn — “it just adds to it.”
He went on to note that this is not the first time he’s been faced with difficult personal circumstances as he prepares for a tournament; in this case, it’s the highly anticipated Players Championship, better known as TPC Sawgrass, which he last won in 2013 and which this time around sees him pitted against the likes of Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth who are respectively ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in the world.
High stakes, to mix sports metaphors, for a man who is facing such turmoil right now. He said of it, “That’s kind of always how it’s been. I’ve always had to deal with circumstances on both, deal with stuff outside the ropes, and once you’re inside the ropes it’s time to tee it up and time to play.”
He went on to say, “I focus, I get into my little world, my little zone and I do the best I possibly can…for a five-hour period…grind it out and win golf tournaments.”
And, as always, when he plays under such circumstances, the world pays that much more attention. You can see the full replay is below; watch as Tiger Woods talks about his breakup with Lindsey Vonn.
Pictures: PR Photos