“I really don’t care what they think”: Tiger Woods revealed his way of dealing with people’s expectations in a 1997 interview

Tiger Woods at The Masters final round in Augusta, Georgia (Image via Getty)
Tiger Woods at The Masters final round in Augusta, Georgia (Image via Getty)
Vishnu Mohan

Tiger Woods began his pro golfing career in 1996. Considered to be the GOAT of the sport, Woods won his first Masters in 1997. He got his first green jacket at the young age of 21 as he beat the field by 12 strokes. This stellar win made him an instant star among fans.

Working his way up since then, Woods went on to become one of the highest-paid athletes in the world. His unrivaled records saw him be inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame. The golfer spent years as the undisputed world number one in the PGA Official World Golf Rankings.

Tiger Woods’ maiden win was never a surprise for him. Speaking in an interview in 1997, Woods revealed that he was unaffected by people’s thoughts about him. Being one of Woods' earliest interviews, it showed his elite winning mentality.

Speaking about dealing with the pressure formed by people’s expectations of him, Tiger Woods said:

“I really don’t care what they think. To be honest, winning a major early, I always had envisioned it. So, it was not that big a surprise for me to do it. But the fashion I did it in is a surprise. To win by 12, that’s more than what I ever dreamt of. To win a major by 21, I thought I’ll do it by 22 or so. I kind of beat my own expectations.”

Replying to a query on whether he was prepared for his grand career, Woods admitted that he would miss his private life:

“I couldn’t answer that even now, or maybe a week from now. I can tell you this.. when I turned pro, I never thought it would be like this…. Now that I have accomplished winning the Masters at age 21, my visibility has definitely gone up. That’s going to be a burden more than anything. When I am out to dinner with my friends, I am with a mouthful of food when people want autographs or a picture, it could get tough.”

Tiger Woods' impressive career

Tiger Woods is one of the greatest athletes in the world. His silverware collection, which includes 15 professional major golf championships and 82 PGA tour victories, backs the claim.

Notably, Woods was the top earning individual sports star until November 2017. He is also the first golfer in history to become a billionaire, holding a net worth of over $1.7 billion.

One of Woods' biggest accomplishments is the length of his career. The 46-year-old athlete continues to remain a pro, despite being one of the oldest players on the field at the recent Masters.

Despite suffering from several injuries over the course of his career, Woods has managed to remain on top.

Unfortunately, Tiger Woods’ age and deteriorating performance mean that he does not have many years left in the sport. While his retirement is bound to happen in the near future, one can only laud Woods for his illustrious career.

Edited by Saman


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