How did Tiger Woods get his name?

Tiger Woods is one of the first names that comes to mind when thinking about golf. Tied to having the highest PGA Tour wins, holding the second highest men’s major championships, and several other records, he is one of the greatest golfers of all time.

However, it might interest readers to know that Tiger Woods isn’t the golfer’s original name. While the world knows him as ‘Tiger’, his birth name was Eldrick Tont Woods. But how did the golfing legend get his name?

What is Tiger’s original name?

Tiger was born as Eldrick Tont Woods in Cypress, California, on December 30, 1975. He is the only child of Kultida, a Thai woman, and Earl Woods, an Army officer, and has three half-siblings from his father’s first marriage.

Reportedly, Tiger’s mother chose Eldrick as his first name because it began with the letter ‘E’ like her husband and ended with the first letter of her own name. Meanwhile, his middle name, Tont, signifies a traditional name in Thai culture, meaning ‘beginning’ in English.

Tiger has used his birth initials as ‘E.T.W.’ in many of his business ventures like ETW Corporation.

How did Tiger Woods get his nickname?

His nickname was given to him by his father in honor of his close friend in the army, Colonel Vuong Dang Phong, who was also referred to as ‘Tiger’.

Unfortunately, his plan did not work out. Phong never knew that his name alike had become one of the world’s greatest athletes since his grave was discovered outside a North Vietnam re-education camp.

Tiger has been known by nickname since his amateur years. In the initial days, he was referred to as Eldrick (Tiger) Woods, but eventually, only Tiger was used by the time he turned professional.

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Apparently, Woods has not changed his official name to Tiger. He still uses his original name in all official records.

However, Tiger was not the only nickname that he called out for. His father, Earl, also referred to him as ‘Sam’ because he felt that Tiger looked like a Sam.

Moreover, he and his former wife, model Elin Nordegren, named their first child, Sam Alexis Woods.

Tiger Woods has had a trophy-laden golfing career so far and looks forward to winning more despite several injuries. In 2021, he overcame a horrifying accident that damaged several parts of his body, especially his right leg. He had to undergo a serious surgery to mobilize his leg using rods and screws. Many thought that this would be the end of Tiger Woods’ sporting career. However, taking everyone by surprise, he made a comeback the very next year and is eyeing his 16th Major title.

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