Tiger Woods said tonight via his website that he is taking a "hiatus" from golf to work on his marriage, which sure needs some repairing. Woods used the word "infidelity" for the first time in the statement -- this following the rampant allegations of Tiger's affairs with multiple women.
This is the right move for Tiger, who has a wife and two young children. If he wants to somehow avoid a divorce, he's got to put his laser-like attentions on something other than a little white ball.
But does this come too late? I found it ironic that Woods' announcement of his break from golf came on the same day that Jenny Sanford announced she was filing for divorce from S.C. governor Mark Sanford, who has had his own issues with infidelity (i.e. the Argentinian "soulmate") and then made some highly-publicized, ultimately unsuccessful attempts to repair his own marriage.
Here's the text of Tiger's statement from his website, TigerWoods.com:
"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. I want to say again to everyone that I am profoundly sorry and that I ask forgiveness. It may not be possible to repair the damage I've done, but I want to do my best to try.
"I would like to ask everyone, including my fans, the good people at my foundation, business partners, the PGA Tour, and my fellow competitors, for their understanding. What's most important now is that my family has the time, privacy, and safe haven we will need for personal healing.
"After much soul searching, I have decided to take an indefinite break from professional golf. I need to focus my attention on being a better husband, father, and person.
"Again, I ask for privacy for my family and I am especially grateful for all those who have offered compassion and concern during this difficult period."
So what does that mean? How long is the break? I really hope Tiger doesn't know. If he does -- if he's already penciling himself in for the 2010 Masters in April as usual, for instance -- that's very cynical.
How would he know at this point, really? If he's serious about trying to fix things, he shouldn't know how long this break will last. Golf will suffer, but it will survive. Tiger sounds like he's trying to get his priorities straight. He should get some time to do that.