I lied to myself, was in denial: Tiger Woods
"I fooled myself for so long, I lied to myself, but at the rehab I had a good look at myself and when all was stripped away I realised the magnitude of what I had done," said golfer Tiger Woods in his first press conference since the sex scandal broke.india Updated: Apr 06, 2010 18:56 IST
Disgraced golfer Tiger Woods finally broke his silence in a press conference where journalists from all over the world had gathered. The golfer answered all questions stoically but politely and firmly refused all personal questions. He once again admitted his mistake and accepted full responsibility for his "horrible actions". "The way I was thinking was not correct, I lied to myself, was in denial," he said.
The assembled sports media at Augusta, didn't intrude much into the golfer's sex scandal by sticking mainly to questions regarding his game, injuries rehab and drug problems. But some tough questions came his way as a reporter asked him if wife, Elin Nordegren would be coming to support him. "Elin is not coming this week," he responded curtly, ignoring a second part to the question asking if her absence was a sign that she wasn't ready to support him yet in his career.
Woods put on a brave show throughout the press conference as he dodged around a volley of questions thrown at him. Some questions did make a dent in his composed armour as he confessed to all, "I fooled myself for so long, I lied to myself, but at the rehab I had a good look at myself and when all was stripped away I realised the magnitude of what I had done, and it was very brutal."
When asked why he stayed away from the media for so long, the golfer asserted that "I followed the law, I followed my lawyer's advice, talked to my sponsors and people closest to me. I needed time, I took a hard look at myself, core morals, to find strength and peace." The sportsman revealed that another important reason he was in hiding, was to deal with the constant harassment to his family. "Being badgered, and photographed all the time was very hard for us" he said.
The golfer's decision to come back and play was because of the immense support he got from his family and fans. "I had no intention of playing golf in the near future, then I started practicing, hitting more balls and it felt great, felt like old times."
Woods also denied ever using illegal substances. " I had a PRP injection to ease my pain when I tore my Achilles, I underwent four operations, then my dad died, and I took drugs to get some sleep at night." he said.
Answering questions about his rehab stint the golfer said, "I was in rehab for 45 days, I took a hard look at myself, and came out a much better person than what I was when I went in, and I will continue with the treatment."
Tiger admitted to being actually very surprised by the support from his fans and peers. "I didn't know what to expect, to be out there in front of people after doing the things, which were horrible, Usually I focused on the shots but this time it was different. Fans cheered for me after what has happened, it was incredible." Asked about reaction of his peers, he said, " I have got so many hugs since I came here, and I'm actually surprised by it."
"It's not about championships but about how you live your life. I hadn't done that in the right way for a long time. I needed to get it right," said Woods as he got emotional about his dad.
It seems the golfer has come out of the scandal a better person. " I'm being more balanced, more centered, by meditating and going back to Buddhist roots for strength and peace of mind." he said.