(NewsCore) – Tiger Woods plummeted out of the world’s top 20 golfers Monday — his lowest position since January 1997.
The US player has not played competitively since May 12 because of knee and Achilles tendon injuries and has slipped from eighth to 21st in the rankings, Sky Sports reported.
Previously, he held the No. 1 spot for more than 11 years during 10 different spells.
The slide in the rankings came after a difficult period for Woods, who saw his private life ripped apart by a series of sex scandals.
Last week, Woods axed his longtime caddie, Steve Williams, after he decided to caddie for another golfer.
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In a radio interview Wednesday in his native New Zealand, Williams said, “I was completely loyal, as loyal as somebody could be. I took a lot of heat during Tiger’s [sex] scandal, not just myself but my family as well, and never really got pardoned from that scandal.”
Woods — who hailed Williams on Wednesday as an “outstanding caddie and a friend” who had been “instrumental” to many of his accomplishments — has not announced who will caddie for him upon his return.