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Regrets? Woods has had more than a few

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Gerry Melendez | The Daily Wildcat Tiger Woods hits his tee shot on No. 18 during a practice round for the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia, on Monday, April 5, 2010. (Gerry Melendez/The State/MCT)

AUGUSTA, Ga. — The most compelling and humanizing moment of
Tiger Woods
' 34-minute mea culpa?


It came when Woods acknowledged having missed the first birthday of his son, Charlie. That occurred Feb. 8, toward the end of his 45-day stay in rehab.


""That hurts a lot,"" Woods said. ""I vowed never to miss another one. It was something I probably will regret for the rest of my life.""


Woods spoke of his many regrets Monday during his first session with a full media contingent, calling his behavior ""pretty brutal"" and admonishing himself for causing ""so much harm to the people I love and care about the most on the planet.""


Woods came across as relaxed, sincere and accommodating. He didn't bristle at a single question and felt comfortable enough to respond to one long query with: ""That was a long-winded one there, bro.""


Woods opened by making two points: He said he was ""blown away"" by the kindness of the Masters galleries Monday morning and apologized to his fellow PGA Tour pros for their being ""bombarded"" with questions about the indiscretions in his personal life.


""Hopefully after today the players can be left alone to focus on the Masters,"" he said.


Woods strongly denied any wrongdoing regarding treatment he received from Canadian doctor
Anthony Galea
, who has been charged with supplying HGH to elite athletes.


""He never gave me HGH or any PEDs,"" Woods said, referring to performance-enhancing drugs. ""I have never taken any illegal drug, ever.""


Woods said he chose Galea because Galea had worked with numerous professional athletes and that he needed treatment following reconstructive knee surgery in June 2008. Woods also disclosed that he tore his right Achilles' tendon six months after his left ACL was repaired.


The dual injuries led Woods to engage in a process called PRP — platelet-enriched plasma treatments. The procedure, which involves taking blood from a patient and ""spinning"" it to produce platelets that accelerate tissue repair, speeds the healing process.


It is increasingly popular among athletes and legal on the PGA Tour.


Woods was less expansive regarding the other medical drama in his life, the SUV accident that landed him in a hospital in the early-morning hours after Thanksgiving.


Woods said he got a ""busted"" lip that required five stitches and a ""pretty sore neck"" but continued to decline to offer details on what transpired — and whether the sleep aid Ambien played a role.


""The police investigated the accident and they cited me 166 bucks,"" he said. ""It's a closed case.""


Woods also declined to specify what he was in rehab for.


""It's personal,"" he replied. ""Thank you.""


Moderator
Craig Heatley
, chair of the tournament's media committee, cut off questions before the world's No. 1 golfer could be asked about a Vanity Fair report that
Michael Jordan
was an enabler for Woods' destructive behavior.


But by then, Woods already had said he took ""full responsibility"" for his actions, which left him rich and famous, but also empty.


""Have I been winning, have I been competing, have I been doing well? Yeah, I have,"" Woods said. ""I've won numerous times the last few years, but I wasn't having anywhere near the amount of fun.


""Why? Look at what I was engaged in. When you live a life where you're lying all the time, life is not fun. And that's where I was. Now that's been stripped all away and here I am. And it feels fun again.""


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