Tiger Woods Apologizes After Prank Involving Tampax Tampon Receives Backlash

Tiger Woods has expressed regret for a joke he made on the golf course which was not well-received.[0] At the Genesis Invitational in Pacific Palisades, California on Thursday, Tiger Woods outdrove Justin Thomas on the ninth tee, handing him a Tampax tampon in the process.[0]

“It was supposed to be all fun and games and obviously it hasn't turned out that way,” he said on Friday.[1] I apologize if I have caused any offense; that was not my intention. We usually joke around with each other, but this time it didn't seem to come across in that manner. However, between us, it was understood to be different.[2]

Paige Spiranic, an ex-professional golfer and social media influencer, tweeted: “If anyone attempts to ‘cancel' Tiger due to this, there will be a rebellion. It's humorous.”[3] Kara Sugar, the CEO of the Women's Global Empowerment Fund, told TMZ Sports that Woods' prank was misogynistic, tone-deaf and “straight-up disrespectful to women and girls all over the world.”[4]

At the conclusion of The Genesis Invitational, Woods ended with a score of 1-under 283, having shot 69-74-67-73 in his first official tournament since The Open Championship in July.[5] In the third round, he posted a score of 67, which was the best since his return to golf at the Masters tournament of last year. This week was also only the second time he had finished all four rounds in the interim.[5]

Michael Johnson, an Olympic great, severely criticized Tiger Woods for his inadequate apology in response to the intense criticism he received for giving Justin Thomas a tampon at the Genesis Invitational.[2]

“Apology starting with ‘If I offended anyone’ is no apology. But this is Tiger. Never been a leader and he’s Teflon. Still heralded after all the mistakes so he’s learned nothing. Media focus always on miraculous recovery. Never why the need for recovery,” Johnson wrote Friday on Twitter.[6]

0. “Tiger Woods Apologizes After Backlash for Handing Justin Thomas a Tampon During Genesis Invitational” Yahoo Entertainment, 18 Feb. 2023, https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/tiger-woods-apologizes-backlash-handing-192144485.html

1. “Tiger Woods Ripped By Women's Empowerment Group As Misogynistic For Tampon Prank” TMZ, 18 Feb. 2023, https://www.tmz.com/2023/02/18/tiger-woods-tampon-prank-ripped-womens-empowerment-group

2. “Tiger Woods: Michael Johnson SLAMS golf icon for his limp apology after his tampon ‘prank'” Daily Mail, 20 Feb. 2023, https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/golf/article-11771587/Tiger-Woods-Michael-Johnson-SLAMS-golf-icon-limp-apology-tampon-prank.html

3. “‘It was supposed to be fun and games’ – Tiger Woods apologises after backlash over tampon ‘prank’ on golf c…” The Sun, 17 Feb. 2023, https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/21429635/tiger-woods-apologises-backlash-tampon-prank

4. “Tiger Woods facing backlash from women's group for prank” Yardbarker, 18 Feb. 2023, https://www.yardbarker.com/golf/articles/tiger_woods_facing_backlash_from_womens_group_for_prank/s1_13132_38485456

5. “Tiger Woods closes Genesis with 2-over 73” PGA TOUR, 19 Feb. 2023, https://www.pgatour.com/article/news/latest/2023/02/19/tiger-woods-closes-the-genesis-invitational-with-2-over-73-the-riviera-country-club

6. “Olympic great Michael Johnson slams Tiger Woods for tampon prank: ‘Never been a leader'” Fox News, 19 Feb. 2023, https://www.foxnews.com/sports/olympic-great-michael-johnson-slams-tiger-woods-tampon-prank-never-been-a-leader