PGA Tour

Tiger's teen instructor Anselmo dies at 96

Golf ball (Getty Images)
Golf ball (Getty Images)

New York - John Anselmo, a former golf instructor for 14-time major champion Tiger Woods who began working with the prodigy at age 10, has died, Golf Digest reported on Saturday. He was 96.

Anselmo, who died on Friday according to the magazine's website report, began guiding Woods in 1986 after Earl Woods, Tiger's father, sought an instructor to succeed Rudy Duran.

Anselmo served as Woods's second coach, working with Tiger for the next seven years before colon cancer left Anselmo unable to teach for most of 1993 and Woods began working with Butch Harmon.

Woods won nine amateur events working with Anselmo, including the first two of his three US Junior Amateur crowns.

"I saw so much rhythm and balance even when he was 10," Anselmo said, according to Golf Digest. "I was awed by it. I knew even at that time he was special. It's like it's destiny. It's so exciting to have been a part of the Tiger team."

Anselmo began his trade in the 1940s after spending time in San Diego closely watching the swing style of golf legend Sam Snead.

Woods, 41, is sidelined by a back injury. He has won 79 US PGA Tour events, three shy of matching Snead's all-time record. He has not won a title since 2013 and last won a major at the 2008 US Open.

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