'Sick to my stomach': Sports world reacts to golf superstar Tiger Woods' accident

News of golfing great Tiger Woods' car crash has sent shockwaves through the sports world.

On Wednesday, the 45-year-old was rushed to a Southern California hospital and immediately underwent surgery, after he was pulled from his vehicle by the 'jaws of life'.

He's reportedly suffered "multiple leg injuries", putting a question mark over his future in the sport.

"I am sick to my stomach," says fellow PGA Tour golfer Justin Thomas, one of Woods' closest friends.

“It hurts to see one of your closest friends get in an accident. Man, I just hope he’s alright. 

"I just worry for his kids, you know. I’m sure they’re struggling."

Several more of Woods' pro-golfing colleagues have extended their support via Twitter, including Justin Rose.

Tony Finau - the world's 13th-ranked golfer - says, without Tiger Woods' influence, he never would've taken up the sport.

"He means a lot to the game of golf," says Finau. "He means a lot to my career. 

"I've said it time after time, the 1997 Masters changed the course of my life, the course of my career.

"Without that event, I probably wouldn't be here or even playing golf, but I'm one of 100 guys out here who would probably say the same thing."

Woods' former girlfriend, Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn, tweeted simply: "Praying for TW right now".

Golden State Warriors NBA stars and avid golfers Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson have also tweeted.

The PGA Tour issued a statement from commissioner Jay Monahan. 

"We are awaiting further information when he comes out of surgery. On behalf of the PGA TOUR and our players, Tiger is in our prayers and will have our full support as he recovers."

"Praying for my brother @TigerWoods, as we all anxiously await more news," former baseball star Alex Rodriguez tweets. "Thinking of him and his entire family."

NBA great Magic Johnson also sent out his best wishes.

Boxing legend Mike Tyson has encouraged Woods to "fight like the champion you are for your kids and the world".

Former US President Donald Trump, who has played golf with Woods on several occasions and awarded him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2019, has urging Woods to get well soon, adding: "You are a true champion!"

Woods held the top spot in professional golf's world rankings for a record 683 weeks, winning 14 Major championship titles between 1997-2008.

After a series of injuries and personal issues derailed his career at times, Woods claimed his 15th Major title at the 2019 Masters, his fifth time earning the coveted green jacket given to Masters champions.

California-born Eldrick 'Tiger' Woods turned professional in 1996 and won his first USPGA Tour title in only his fifth start. Since then, he has virtually redefined the game.

His success on the greens transformed him into a worldwide superstar, ushering in an era of multimillion-dollar endorsements and lucrative appearance money, and spreading the sport to an audience far beyond its traditional image of male, white and middle class.

Woods also served as a major influence on the modern generation of golfers, such as Australian world No.1 Jason Day, who says he read a book about Woods and decided to copy the American's high work ethic, spending hours and hours on the practice range.

His 15 Major titles stands second only to the record 18 won by Jack Nicklaus.