NEW YORK, December 2- Golf superstar Tiger Woods Wednesday admitted "transgressions" and said he had let his family down, in a statement posted on his website that appeared to confirm rumors of an extramarital affair."I have let my family down and I regret those transgressions with all of my heart," Woods said, appealing for privacy after tabloid reports fueled media frenzy over his alleged links to women other than his wife, Elin.
"I have not been true to my values and the behavior my family deserves. I am not without faults and I am far short of perfect. I am dealing with my behavior and personal failings behind closed doors with my family. Those feelings should be shared by us alone."
The star he would "strive to be a better person and the husband and father my family deserves," but also asked the media to leave him in peace.
"Personal sins should not require press releases and problems within a family shouldn’t have to mean public confessions."
The statement broke Woods’s silence maintained since Friday when he had a mysterious car crash outside his Florida home.
His refusal to talk even to police about the circumstances of the crash fueled media speculation that he was escaping from Elin after she became enraged at reports he was secretly seeing a New York nightclub hostess, Rachel Uchitel.
Uchitel told tabloid newspapers Tuesday that she is not even friends with Woods and never had any sexual affair with him.
On Wednesday, the celebrity gossip magazine Us Weekly posted an online audio recording of what it said was Woods begging a different woman to change her telephone voicemail in order to hide their affair from his wife.
Us Weekly magazine said that Los Angeles cocktail waitress Jaimee Grubbs, 24, had an extramarital affair with Woods lasting 31 months, in which they met 20 times for sex and exchanged steamy text messages.
The magazine published what it claimed to be a recording of the embattled golf superstar urging Grubbs to change her voicemail greeting because his wife was close to uncovering their affair.
In the recording — which could not be verified — a man is heard saying:
"Hey, it’s, uh, it’s Tiger. I need you to do a huge favor. Can you please take your name off your phone? My wife went through my phone and may be calling you."
At the end of the brief message, the nervous-sounding man says: "Do this for me… quickly."
The public apology for his "sins" appeared to be an attempt by Woods, one of the all-time great golfers, to end a publicity nightmare that has already damaged his ultra-lucrative, squeaky-clean image.