Timeline: Tiger Woods' professional golfing career

(Reuters) - The following timeline charts the professional career of American golfer Tiger Woods:

1997 - Woods, 21, wins the first of 14 career major titles with a 12-stroke victory over Tom Kite at the Masters, making him both the youngest golfer and the first black professional to triumph at Augusta National. Two months later, he was ranked number one in the world for the first time in his career.

2000 - Completes a career grand slam by the age of 24 with wins at the U.S. Open, British Open and PGA Championship, making him the youngest player ever to win all four major golf titles and just the second to win three majors in a year.

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2001 - Won the second of his four Masters titles, to become the first person to hold all four of professional golf's major championships simultaneously - the so-called 'Tiger Slam’.

2008 - Won his 14th and most recent major at the U.S. Open by beating Rocco Mediate on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff at Torrey Pines following an 18-hole playoff, despite playing with damaged knee cartilage and two stress fractures of the leg.

2009 - Weeks after being involved in a bizarre car accident outside his home that ballooned into a sex scandal, Woods says in December that he is taking an indefinite break from professional golf after admitting he cheated on his wife.

2010 - Makes his return to professional golf with a fourth-place finish at the Masters in April. In October, after a run of 281 weeks, Woods is unseated from the world number ranking by Lee Westwood, ending the record for most consecutive weeks at that position.

2013 - Captures his most recent PGA Tour victory with a triumph at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in August, giving him 79 career wins, three short of the all-time mark held by Sam Snead.

2014 - A week before the Masters in April, Woods announces that he requires back surgery, forcing him to miss the year's opening major for the first time since 1994. He returned to competition in July but reinjured his back the following month.

2014 - After 60 consecutive weeks, Woods is knocked from the world number one ranking in May, marking the last time he occupied that top spot.

2015 - Posts the worst score of his professional career in June after carding a mind-boggling 13-over-par 85 in the third round of the Memorial tournament in Ohio.

2015 - After seemingly being injury-free for most of the year, Woods had a second microdisectomy performed in September with a follow-up procedure six weeks later, forcing him to shut down his playing schedule indefinitely.

2016 - In April, he plays his first stretch of holes in eight months at a golf course opening in Montgomery, Texas

2016 - On Sept. 7, Woods announces that he hopes to make his competitive return to golf at the PGA Tour's Oct. 13-16 Safeway Open in Napa, California, after spending more than a year on the sidelines.

(Writing by Frank Pingue; Editing by Mark Lamport-Stokes)

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