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Woods looking for fresh start

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Iain Carter | 15:38 UK time, Thursday, 21 July 2011

For the first time in 13 years, Tiger Woods is on the look out for a new caddie.

Golf's most successful player/bagman relationship is at an end following the former world number one's sacking of Steve Williams.

Woods won 13 of his 14 majors with the brusque New Zealander at his side. Williams was a classic right-hand man, ready to assist his boss in any way possible.

That might simply have meant efficiently transporting his player's clubs around the course with the minimum of fuss, doing the basics of keeping up and shutting up.

Equally, it might mean suggesting the right club or line, or accurately interpreting the strength and direction of the wind.

It could also mean, as it did on at least one occasion, depositing an annoying camera in the nearest lake. If that's what it took to help Tiger, that's what he would do.

In his decade of domination, Woods was always quick to praise Williams for his contribution, while the caddie was unstintingly loyal in standing by his man throughout the scandal that precipitated a very high-profile marriage break-up.

Theirs was the ultimate player/caddie relationship and Woods will have to search far and wide for a personality better equipped at dealing with the unique pressures that go with the job of carrying his bag.

Players always want absolute trust in their on-course confidant. Caddies, meanwhile, have to be strong in conveying their views, especially if they believe their boss is making the wrong decision. That is not always an easy thing to do.

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More important than the ability to call a club or read the line of a putt is the ability to say the right thing at the right time. This was highlighted by new Open champion Darren Clarke, who nearly parted with his bagman just before his greatest triumph, at Royal St George's.

After struggling in the final round of the Scottish Open at Castle Stuart, both Clarke and caddie John Mulrooney lost their tempers with each other.

"We had a tough week in Scotland," Clarke admitted. "He didn't quite know what to do whenever I was having a little bit of a wobbly.

"But he's finally learned and he knows a little better now, obviously a lot better now, as to what to say to me and how to deal with me."

The pair landed Clarke's first major after only seven weeks working together, having claimed a title in Majorca in their first outing as a team.

Unlike Woods, Clarke has gone through his fair share of bagmen, an inevitable scenario when results are disappointing.

But it is not just players making the decision to move on - they can be dropped by their caddies too.

"I was sacked by my caddie - and quite right, too," said Colin Montgomerie at this year's BMW PGA Championship after Jason Hempleman left him to take Francesco Molinari's bag.

That move was at the height of a caddie merry-go-round.

Craig Connolly was sacked by Martin Kaymer and, despite being offered and initially accepting Molinari's bag, decided to head back to Paul Casey, who had given Christian Donald the boot. Donald is now working for Kaymer.

"He's known as the [Chelsea owner] Roman Abramovic of golf," one caddie told me. "You only get one season with Kaymer, regardless of results."

Other players remain steadfastly loyal. Padraig Harrington and Ronan Flood, Lee Westwood and Billy Foster, Rory McIlroy and JP Fitzgerald, and Graeme McDowell and Ken Comboy, who was once sacked by Casey on the eve of the Ryder Cup, are all long established pairings.

Phil Mickelson wouldn't seem the same without Jim "Bones" McKay at his side. The same goes for Jim Furyk and Mike "Fluff" Cowan, who was on the Woods bag when he won his first major, the 1997 Masters.

Caddies earn their money with their early morning course reconnaissance, their knowledge of their player's strengths and weaknesses, and their experience and judgement.

It is easy to think that a successful golfer/caddie pairing has to be like a happy marriage but that would be wrong. The bagman is the counsellor and he has to make sure it is the relationship between the player, his clubs, the course and the weather that is happy and prosperous.

It is not an easy trick to pull off. So, as Williams prepares to take Adam Scott's bag on a permanent basis, good luck to Woods as he searches for a new caddie. More to the point, good luck to whoever it is that gets the job.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Another vain attempt from Tiger to keep himself in the limelight. I feel this move will just expediate his dramatic fall from grace.

  • Comment number 2.

    It is the right move by Tiger to let go of the past and think of the future. Looks like Tiger figured the caddie was carrying too much excess bags. As all good things come to an end he made a decision for him to get his game back. So let's give him the credit for taking the bold step by firing the mouthy caddie. And Williams ought to accept the firing gracefully and move on.

  • Comment number 3.

    Woods is fast becoming the Michael Jackson of golf. Everything that was great is now tinged with controversy. Look out for merry go rounds in place of his practice greens.

  • Comment number 4.

    as much as i admire Steve Williams ability as a caddie, i dislike his personality. perhaps Tiger ditching him and getting a clean slate will have a positive effect on his career

  • Comment number 5.

    Williams has become too big a personality and considering the huge riches he's accumulated as Tiger's caddie I think he should accept his sacking in a far better spirit.

  • Comment number 6.

    Another vain attempt from Tiger
    to keep himself in the limelight. I
    feel this move will just expediate
    his dramatic fall from grace.
    _________________________

    Surely, it's his prerogative to make any changes he wants which could start him on a clean slate and help his progress without having a clueless hater label such a choice "vain". Why choose to comment on something you're obviously ignorant about?

    And Tiger doesn't need to "keep himself in the limelight". He's probably struggling to get out from the glare of the microscope that scrutinizes everything he does.

  • Comment number 7.

    While Tiger has every right to make a fresh start, I think it's pretty lousy to ditch Williams after he has hung around for two difficult years, barely earning a cheque. Yes Williams is a wealthy man but after that scandal, he could easily have moved on to someone playing more regularly. A fair decision, disgraceful timing

  • Comment number 8.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 9.

    Golfer sacks caddie !! So what it happens every day. This particular caddie should thank the stars that the golfer who sacked him made him a multi millionaire. Indeed the 'richest sportsman' in NZ.

    This is a non story.

  • Comment number 10.

    The more we hear from Stevie the more I agree with post 2, this is Tiger completing a break from his previous life and moving on.

  • Comment number 11.

    Personally, I think Tiger is going to struggle to find someone who gets him like Steve Williams used to (how many caddie's would have gone after that fan's camera!). But, I agree that Tiger has changed so much that the Steve-Tiger team had come to a natural end.

    In relation to this story, I had a look at how a caddie helps his player on my blog at http://sporttalkwitharmi.blogspot.com/. I tried to look at how Caddie-Player relationships vary, but what sort of caddie does Tiger Woods need? Any suggestions?

  • Comment number 12.

    Williams made more money carrying this bag than he could ever have dreamed of and three years ago Woods showed him considerable loyalty after the caddy's spiteful insults to Phil Mickelson embarrassed both of them, so his bleating is way out of line. What sort of caddy does Tiger need now? The sort who can convince him that once he steps onto the course the damage to his image, the loss of public respect and sponsorship millions doesn't matter a damn because the history books will only record what he won, not what kind of person he was. Easier said than done.

  • Comment number 13.

    Sorry but this smacks of a man desperate to recapture something. He's now changed coach, swing & caddie and the golf world now seems to be happy to live without him with McIlroy et al making hay while he sits at home resting his leg. When he first missed a Major we asked whether the win had the same value without Tiger in the field. Tiger is now 20th in the world rankings and we are taking less notice. In my opinion Woods has often been accused of being aloof and distant, and the sacking of Williams, justified or not, seems to have been done in that way.

  • Comment number 14.

    Having divested himself of all the people that supported him on the way up to the pinnacle of the golfing world its difficult to see where the stability and support need to get back on top again is coming from. Swing change, caddie change, wife gone, not the way to go for anyone, never mind a top sportsman. Too many changes!!!!!

  • Comment number 15.

    Iain,
    The by-line on the Sports Page advertising this article asks, "Who next . . . . etc".

    Well, Who next??

  • Comment number 16.

    It is naive to think that TW has not thought this through. He wouldn't sack SW without having replacements in mind. Probably knows who it is already. There are only a few caddies now operating who wouldn't want this opportunity.

    I suspect that once the parameters are established TW's caddy may have it easier than most as his player has won over a 100 tour events on every continent, on all types of golf courses, every imaginable weather condition and serious opposition. In other words carry the bag, provide information and advice when needed and be able to protect TW from the on course distractions which come with being one of the worlds best golfers.

  • Comment number 17.

    I feel criticism of Tiger is a bit unfair here- Ok don't know why he's chosen this moment but he's stuck with the guy for 13 years, which if you read the article and compare with other players that's a helluva long stint.

  • Comment number 18.

    This story seems to neglect the fact that Williams has been caddying for Adam Scott for awhile now and certainly the last two Opens and is continuing in that role.
    It's likely that Williams moved on and decided not to go back. Woods is saving face.

  • Comment number 19.

    This guy should just be grateful he earned millions and shut up. Tiger has been too loyal to him because most golfers keep caddies for a minimum of two years and he's been kept on for 13 years !!!!!

  • Comment number 20.

    I'm delighted to see a few people stick up for Tiger here. The guy has done nothing wrong in this regard. Loads of golfers change their caddies - it's par for the course:-) sorry couldn't resist that ! Tiger has made Steve Williams a very rich man and yet he has the audacity to cry and moan. I wish Tiger all the best in his continued quest to get back to the top and I for one wouldn't bet against it even if he has only one good leg.

  • Comment number 21.

    It seems Williams needs to look up the meaning of respect in the dictionary. He said Mickelson did not respect him, now he says Woods needs to earn his respect again. The man is just a caddy, needs to get over himself.

  • Comment number 22.

    Williams is bagging for someone else already while Tiger's off sick, so Woods' justified in ending partnership. I'm sure the caddie too needs a change of scene. In my eyes Tiger is always No1 golfer, and courses round the world are crying for his return sooner rather than later.

    No matter who the pretenders to his throne are, they're not worth caddying for him. COME ON KING TIGER !!

  • Comment number 23.

    @6: It is, of course, his decision to replace a caddy if he feels it will be beneficial to his future performance. However, what I was getting at (and what perhaps you may have seen with more patience and less aggression) is that it is the apparent manner of Williams' dismissal which is the talking point.

    As many have said earlier, this should be a non-story. Golfer sacks caddy. But after 13 years of service, does Williams not deserve to be told in a less public and embarrasing way? The sacking appears to have been carried out in an immature, childish and (whilst maybe done for the right reasons) lacking in class and humility. As is often the way with TW

  • Comment number 24.

    Yes, I tend to agree too much attention on this given the rate Kaymer and some others go through caddies.
    What was good for Tiger Woods with Steve Williams might not be that good now. I know people I worked with in my 20's who I would hate to be working with in my 30's.
    Besides, I feel Williams was out of the order to be 'disappointed' in Tiger Woods infidelities. Personally, I don't see that has any of Williams' business. An employee commenting on his employers personal and private life seems to have over-stepped the boundaries. Maybe this is what soured the relationship and trust?

  • Comment number 25.

    Many of you are right in saying it is up to Tiger to sack Steve, but i don't except that Steve should be grateful for Tiger keeping him employed for 13 years, there is a reason Tiger kept him so long, [well 12 in fact] 12 majors and countless other tournaments, any Golfer in their right mind would keep a caddie if they had won 12 Majors with him.
    Tiger isn't in a good place at the moment and that reflects in his decision to sack steve, there are other caddies out there but Tiger is a big name and attracts big audiences and this will add even more pressure to the new caddie when he names him, yes he can hire and fire who he wants, but the timing is not good, yes steve williams has earned a lot of money, but remember he has been realistically unemployed over the past 18 months due to Tigers issues, so he also deserves to get back into the golfing world, watch this space ADAM SCOTT to win Major and reach NO1 with Steve Williams by his side.

  • Comment number 26.

    I dont see what the big problem is, and I also dont see why the timing of this is so bad. If Tiger was ever going to change bag-men, the timing is perfect, during a lay-off with injury while the guy's carrying someone else's bag. What? Whats so awful about that, its not like Tiger is active or on the eve of a big tournament. There have been far worse timings of change by other golfers in the past as noted in this blog but that never created a stir. It's anything to do with Tiger, gets jumped on like its some kind of controversy to be debated over by judgemental types. Tiger changed his caddy, the timing was good, get over it.

  • Comment number 27.

    P.S I dont understand the comment before mine left by Brian Cake, I really dont. It quite inconsistent. On one hand you insist the timing is'nt good, without explaining why, on the other hand you express that Stevie has been effectively unemployed for the last 18 months (which is not true by the way) and then state that he deserves to get back into the golfing world. These two statements are not consistent, if Steve's career has been held up for the past 18 months as you say, and if he deserves the chance to move on, then is'nt the timing actually perfect?

    Your message sounds confused, and the phrase "the timing is'nt good" is now starting to become a cliche, to be offered without argument, it seems.

  • Comment number 28.

    Tiger is his boss & for Steve just to say "he has to earn back my respect" means he still holds moral judgment, which is bs. Steve was an employee, who stepped over the line a few times & got fired he needs to move on. Tiger must have someone lined up for replacement as Steve will be sought after. Have to say i do love the Kiwi's they hold no punches & Steve must be feeling the petrol costs for his car racing team with little caddying or wins lol ;)

  • Comment number 29.

    As many have said before, a change of caddie is normally no big deal because it happens all the time.

    Steve Williams has been an excellent caddie for Tiger Woods and they were well matched personalities, both being very difficult to deal with as I have witnessed close at hand at several Open Championships and Ryder Cups.

    Sometimes, it is best to say nothing and I believe that both parties should keep their own counsel for the time being.

    Perhaps this story is best consigned to Steve Williams' memoirs.

  • Comment number 30.

    The fact is there are far more talented 'sportsman' than Steve Williams not earning a tiny percent of what he has earned out carrying Tiger Woods bag.
    Williams might be a good caddy but thats where it stops, he earns a living on the back of others talent, and he was fortunate enough to be caddying for the most talented of all.
    In pro golf, caddys come and go, and Williams should be grateful to his former boss for the riches he has earned, to go public after the event shows a lack of respect and uncouthness which frankly Williams is not unknown for.

    Personally I think Tiger did the right thing, get a new caddy to commence his come back and start fresh.

  • Comment number 31.

    TW has won his last major and will not return to being a dominant force in golf. His body and more importantly his mind/self-belief are shot.

  • Comment number 32.

    He is running out of friends and supporters, he is lucky people are giving him a second chance after his bewildering behavior, a real shame as he would have gone down as one of the true legends but now without respect will be quicker forgotten.

  • Comment number 33.

    'Lacking in class'. Golfer sacks a caddy, then someone makes a blog on the subject, therefore facilitating the TW haters to have one more shot.

    What is this lacking in class thing. All golfers swear, many have had affairs, all throw their clubs, say inappropriate things to the camera. Name me a golfer and I will find something to critsise.

    Stenson smashes his club and cuts himself in the process. Garcia throwing his club away after a duff shot in a bunker. Rory dumping his girlfriend. Westwood refusing to speak to the media after missing the cut in the Open. I could go on and on.

    These people are human , something that some of the bloggers who post here and elsewhere do not attribute to TW. They seize on every tit bit about TW then go into a feeding frenzy. He sacked his caddy, he didn't murder him. get over it.

  • Comment number 34.

    @32

    What bewildering behaviour - is that in regard to parting ways while he's injured and the caddie is working for someone else?

    Do you honestly think because Tiger cheated on his wife and got a divorce that all those Majors go to someone else?

    Your name seems very apt...

  • Comment number 35.

    I for one am glad to see the back of Williams. I was at the Ryder Cup in 2006 (K Club) and found every player and caddie on both sides to be both courteous and professional EXCEPT Williams. His attitude to the paying spectators was plain and simple rude.

    From then on I followed him quite closely and to say was trying to dine out on Tigers success was an understatement.

    Caddies should be like children at school - behave well, speak only when spoken to and respect their peers. Williams has deviated from this once too often and has rightly paid the highest price in my opinion.

  • Comment number 36.

    Good riddance to Williams who as a caddie may have been good but as a man IMO his attitude was poor towards fans, the press and his employer and other caddies.

    Woods also has a bad attitude but may come back and changing bagman is not the biggest change in the world.

  • Comment number 37.

    @34

    No, I refer to the behavior of being a serial wife cheater with anything that walks over a sustained period, whilst giving the impression of a family man and model citizen. He got off very lightly because of his genius at golf and people gave him a second chance, but when you start stabbing people like SW in the back that did stick with him then people lose patience and his depraved behavior is seen for what it is, he has always been arrogant, but whilst it used to help him is now going to bite him when he has realised his time has gone.

  • Comment number 38.

    You have to remember that this IS more than a "golfer sacks caddy" story; TW & SW were best friends & TW was SW's "Best Man" when he got married a couple of years ago. Yes SW became the "richest sportsman in NZ" on the back of his caddying for TW but he was much more than a caddy & probably knows more about Tiger than Tiger would care to dwell on. This is a major sporting story because of the closeness of their previous relationship. Given that SW has expressed his shock & disappointment Tiger may like to check whether he has a confidentiality clause within any contracts he had with SW.

  • Comment number 39.

    the only person who is bitter is Steve Williams...maybe because he won't be earning money off Tiger Wood's back and being associated with him...

    Tiger Woods did what boxers do to promoters/ trainers, tennis players do to coaches, footballers do to agents and racing drivers do to managers... they all know when things are not getting better they have to make changes and if that means firing people that you have long association with then it has to be done

    Examples

    Lewis Hamilton sacked his dad as his manager
    Lennox Lewis sacked Frank Maloney as his promoter
    Andy Murray parted with his various coaches
    Tim Henman parted with David Felgate too late when everyone said he was not improving anymore
    Nick Faldo sacked his caddy Fanny Sunesson after a lean period

    its strictly sporting reasons but people are making a big thing because its Tiger Woods

  • Comment number 40.

    Is it true that Tiger may be making a move for Nick Faldo's Fanny? Desperate times.

  • Comment number 41.

    The Tiger defenders seem to be missing the point as per usual.

    Steve Williams said, and I quote, "I'm not disappointed I've been fired - that's part of the job - but the timing is extraordinary."

    What he's annoyed about is that his integrity was called into question when the whole Tiger scandal broke with people assuming he knew what was going on.

    Many other caddies would have walked away at that point but he didn't and put himself and his family through a stressful period.

    Tiger's reward for this loyalty was to sack him.

    Further proof that money and fame can enable Tiger to have much in life but it cannot buy him class.

  • Comment number 42.

    Anyone can show "integrity" to someone that makes them a millionaire!

    Williams has the same arrogance as Tiger and their relationship was always going to end badly.
    Williams has no right to complain and it is a business decision by TW but Williams has taken it personally.

    Get over it and move on rather than spitting the dummy out of the pram.

  • Comment number 43.

    @41

    "The timing is extraordinary"

    Well is it really ? Given the fact its been over a year now since it all started with the car accident at Tigers home

    If anything Tiger Woods could have fired him even earlier if he wanted to

    What is Steve Williams moaning about his got $20m in the bank from being associated with Tiger Woods.

    "Integrity" - rubbish if he has any he'll realise Tiger's mind is elsewhere now and not on Golf. If he had any he would have just accepted it and moved on and making out he's been betrayed etc

    Its never good timing when you're forced to leave or sacked rather than deciding it on your own terms and time no matter what job you do. This happens all the time at work and business. Its not like he's treated him shabbily to have Woods being sued for unfair dismissal is it ??

  • Comment number 44.

    @41 diamondnharris

    What Woods did is no different to Lewis Hamilton sacking his dad as his manager, Tim Henman finally parting with his friend David Felgate as coach

    or Lennox Lewis sacking Frank Maloney as his promoter/ manager or Greg Rusedski parting with his coach Sven Groeneveld

    why do these people do it ? Because they realise they neede a change in their life and to look at other ways to have further success and that means changing the people around them sometimes.

  • Comment number 45.

    @ 42 - By integrity I meant people assumed he was someway involved in the scandal, whether covering for Tiger or worse. This put strain on his marriage so he could have walked away but didn't.

    So you're saying that because Tiger made him a millionaire he had no choice but to jeopardise his family life when he could have just quit?

    @ 43 - so if you stayed with your company when it was going through the ringer and they rewarded you by sacking you you'd be happy would you?

    @44 - as Williams has said, all relationships can come to an end but again to sack him after he's stood by him and remained loyal shows a lack of class on Woods' part.

  • Comment number 46.

    Tiger will be remembered as a great talent, but not a great in the history of golf, no class, respect for others or conscience. This is tip of the iceberg which proves that, Nicklaus, Watson, Seve and many others are head and shoulders above irrespective of trophy cabinet size. Shame.

  • Comment number 47.

    In short Woods would have been better of when the scandal broke saying "I'm taking a break for 18 months and when I come back I want to start afresh completely with a new coach and caddy etc. Thanks for everything you've done blah blah blah".

    But he didn't and this is what has annoyed Williams.

  • Comment number 48.

    How can the timing be a surprise when I understand Williams said he was working for Adam Scott at the open because he didnt want to miss any majors. If thats not his ego talking himself out of job I dont know what is.

  • Comment number 49.

    #48: 2ndteam:
    Williams flew from his NZ home to caddy for Woods at Congressional without being told by Woods that he was withdrawing. My understanding is that he then asked Woods' permission to carry Scott's bag. Apparently Tiger didn't really appreciate that but the fact is that Williams was left hanging around otherwise, hearing as little about Tiger's future plans as you and I.
    And Iain Carter who still hasn't answered the advertised precept for this article:
    "Who next for the ailing American golf star?" (BBC's words.)

  • Comment number 50.

    I think Steve Williams was the reason Tiger's golf is gone to pot. He has spent more time with the man then any other human on earth including his ex wife. So it was Steves job to caddy for Tiger not just on the golf course but on the course of Life!
    Where I'm afraid to say he gave Tiger some bad reads thus making Tiger use the wrong 'club' on too many occasions.

    Finally Tiger can get back to his best now Steve is gone.

  • Comment number 51.

    Rory McIlroy has dumped his long term girlfriend for some tennis player...Is he on Tigers path of womanizing?

  • Comment number 52.

    Ha! Ha! Some of these comments are hilarious and should be given from high pulpit on a Sunday morning. Love cheat, no class, morally depraved, backstabber, no integrity, arrogant etc........

    This is class, over 100 wins world wide, 14 majors, leading US scorer in Ryder Cup. (and still counting in all of those). Oh I forgot, 3 US Amateur Champs, won the US Open on one leg, won the Open at St Andrews without troubling a bunker, won the Open at Hoylake using his driver once, beat the US Open field at PB by 15 shots, beat the Masters field by 12 shots.

    In all of this TW has used just 2 caddies, how many has Phil Mick been through or Westwood or Donald or Faldo. You know what no ones really interested. Because unless you have an axe to grind your'e more interested about their performance on the golf course.



  • Comment number 53.

    Billy foster and lee westwood "remain steadfastly loyal"
    Really!!! look at foster's bags over the years and westwood's caddy list (8 in 10 years)

    thats loyalty

  • Comment number 54.

    Kudos to monsieurthierry. I completely agree with accurate assessment of miketj65' ignorant posting. The latter knows as much of Tiger as does a wart hog about the mating habits of praying mantids.

    You can tell the character of man by how he behaves in stressful situations. Steve Williams' reaction to his parting from TW was disgraceful diatribe from a man sucking lemon. He is a no body who became multi-million-rich and famous by being a glorified porter. I reckon he is bitter because he now caddies for someone who is far less famous, and possibly less wealthier than him. It is like being a servant of someone much poorer than you.

    Steve, get over it. You rode the gravy train for over a decade. All great things come to an end. Juding by your disgraceful behavior, I say TW is right to fire you. He has chosen to completely change his life and his game. He has every right to do so regardless of the wisdom of it, or the outcome. And you had no right to demand that Tiger stick by you when he has done so for so long and made you "the wealthiest sporstman in NZ". And how did you come the wealthiest? By carrying a bag, being a porter, and never playing one game of professional golf.
    Good riddance.

  • Comment number 55.

    Big dollops of tosh talked by some people on this blog.Steve Williams is an arrogant,self indulgent man who was totally and utterly set up for life by TW.End of story.His contribution to the success has been to give out yardage and know a bit of landscape gardening.He carries a bag in reality & little else.I truly cannot believe he said in the recorded interview that at the masters in 2010 he told tiger (who has deposited approx 10 - 20 million dollars in his account in 12 years) that tiger had to prove himself again to him.Is this guy for real? Surely if this smug statement was being dished out, it would be from boss to employee.Also,what right does SW to comment on the PRIVATE life of his boss etc..?It won't make one tiny bit of difference who is on the bag,when he is fit the man is a genius and if he doesn't win more majors, I am the pope.He is merely getting his house in oreder and starting afresh.He has 7 years on big DC, is anyone seriously writing him off because of the departure of a big lump of a bag carrier who has the ego of a diva?Not me.

  • Comment number 56.

    Regardless of the personal characteristics of either man, Steve Williams was on Tiger's bag because he was the best caddie. When a top caddie leaves a top player he, or she, moves to another top bag. #39 Did Nick Faldo sack Fanny Sunesson ?

  • Comment number 57.

    @23- "does Williams not deserve to be told in a less public and embarrasing way? The sacking appears to have been carried out in an immature, childish and (whilst maybe done for the right reasons) lacking in class and humility. As is often the way with TW" How do you know how this sacking actually occurred!? Were you there in the room with TW and SW? You must have amazing contacts!

    Williams is a strong character with a bullish nature. He was always going to come out with such comments on this occurrence. This is the nature of professional golf- caddies get sacked. This has been one of the longest player-caddie combinations in recent years. Woods is perfectly entitled to find a new man to carry his bag, after all it is HIS bag. After 13 years he made SW a very wealthy man, at one point he was New Zealand's highest earning sports personality!

    I believe what is key here is that SW had lost a lot of respect for Tiger after all the scandal, he made that clear to Tiger. It's a fair enough point, and I respect him for being man enough to tell him what he thought. I think once such a thing has happened, where a caddie has lost respect for his player, then that player-caddie relationship is destined for failure. It needs to be a relationship with no baggage (you'll have to excuse that one!) and working in harmony. If that was not going to be posssible then it was time to move on.

    I wish SW every success with Adam Scott and hope Tiger can find a caddy as good as him. Not easy as he is one of the best. Just one piece of the increasingly complex jigsaw in getting back to the top.

  • Comment number 58.

    Williams is a glorified baggage handler and one that abuses the paying public.

    This is probably the best decision Woods has made in some time.

    For the first time I think maybe Woods is serious about getting his act together and may pay the game more respect in future.

    If Williams really was the highest paid 'sportsman' in New Zealand then there must have been quite a few All Blacks choking on their Steinlager.

  • Comment number 59.

    I cant believe this story has had as much air time as it has had. 13 years is a long time to be in any position let alone that of a caddie. Steve Williams needs to stick to doing what he is obviously good at (caddieing) and accept this for what it is. I hope to see Tiger continue to learn from his past and reform himself. I for one would be happy to see him back at the top of the sport.

  • Comment number 60.

    Frankly who cares what Tiger Woods does now ?He was the outstanding golfer in the world for over a decade but as a personality never impressed and has proved to be a pretty poor father and husband . His awful confession on television and the coordinated hugs to his mother and the tv advert featuring his dead father must have left alot of people feeling just how low can this guy go to protect his corporate image ? Caddies come and go so this really is a non-story

  • Comment number 61.

    If this is seen as a man trying to break free from his past then the one person more than anyone he needs to get rid of is Steinberg.
    Steinberg doesn't care about Tiger as a person, all he cares about is how much money can he squeeze from him. Whilst it's plausible to believe Steve Williams when he said he knew nothing of Tiger's extra marital issues the same cannot be said of Steinberg.
    If Tiger still wants to beat Nicklaus' 18 majors then his overriding priority is to maximise his golfing abilities and chances and as long as Steinberg (who, because he has taken Tiger from IMG will be using Tiger as his cash cow) is at the helm Tiger will be chasing the money more than chasing the titles.
    One good thing that could come out of this is that Adam Scott starts performing better and winning more because with a swing like his he should be winning regularly.

  • Comment number 62.

    It seems it was more the manner of the sacking that's caused the problem. Maybe a personal word with Steve Williams thanking him for all he'd done but explaining that it was time to move on would have helped. This is basic people management stuff.
    Looks like this is another case of Tiger shooting himself in the foot. Williams doesn't come out much better though with his mouthy tirade

  • Comment number 63.

    I think Woods is trying to find a way back into the game, buit sacking his caddy, argueably the most successful caddy in golf, is the wrong move. He knows Williams understands his game better than anyone out there and he needs him if he is ever going to be a force, again. Woods is biggest problem is his injury and the fact he is not able to adapt his swing to suit his body, he still wants to be able to rely on loading his left leg/knee with all the force of his golf swing,which he just can´t physically do anymore. Woods needs to go back to the drawing board and iron out the flaws in his swing before sacking his caddy.

  • Comment number 64.

    Who does Steve Williams think he is? You'd swear it was a fifty fifty partnership the way he's going on. Fact is that tiger would still have his 14 majors regardless of who's carrying his bag. Williams is an ingrate. Tiger has made him a wealthy man yet he turns his back on him. His eventual tell all book should be an interesting read though!

  • Comment number 65.

    Well said sneaky pete,nicely put.
    I will run another one by you and that is when TW does return he will have a more accessible,friendly bag carrier as I think he realises that SW was an ignoramus disliked by alot of PGA players and fans alike. Get Bjorns caddy wobbly, seems a loved chap with good credentials!

  • Comment number 66.

    To all those short sighted and short minded people having negative things to say about Tiger, just remember that no one in British sports history has achieved what he has single handedly achieved. I am talking from the inception of this country to date, not one soul has neared his achievement let alone bettered it, so remember that

  • Comment number 67.

    No individual or team earned as much as Tiger did in the corresponding year and that is with him playing badly and was ineffective, so imagine when he does get back to winning ways. As we say in my part of the world "Don't hate, appreciate".

  • Comment number 68.

    Thank God the world is not seen from the prism of the English people but rather from the Americans who encourage everything positive about life, and not the drab that epitomises everything quintessentially English, so the people coming in here saying negative things about his demeanour and that should put themselves in his shoes. The greatest and most recognised sportsman in the world, and according to Forbes, the highest paid for a very very long time. So what he did not drink beer like Darren Clark or be everybody's pal like Rory when everything's going right for him, but when Ricki Fowler showed him up, he soon had the hump and then came on air to slag off the British weather, and thats from your golden boy. Tut tut

  • Comment number 69.

    Tiger is aloof as are your 'supposedly' upper classes. Is it right for them to be aloof? What makes them better than Tiger? Not every player is warm to the supporters, and not every player's going to stand there signing autographs, some will some wont. Live with it, that's life.

  • Comment number 70.

    I like the way some people use words loosely. The way he sacked him was not class. Who are you to suggest what is class and what isn't? To say it is immature and childish says it all about the thoughts of this site. I like the fact that Tiger steals the light with his 'supposedly' press conferences during important tournaments, and I know it riles a lot of people, well tough, Tiger could care less what you think.

  • Comment number 71.

    It's alright though when Tiger's extra marital affairs were plastered all over the press. When he was been ditched left right and centre by his sponsors, who will inextricably come back to the enigma that is Tiger. These people enjoyed reading his demise, but as they have selective memory they only hear and see what they want. Tough.

  • Comment number 72.

    I'm surprised he lasted as long as he has especially after the 'Bones' onslaught. They were of the same ilk and whist Tiger seems to have learnt a little about humility SW is the same knuckle dragger of old.

  • Comment number 73.

    60. At 01:56 23rd Jul 2011, telboy50 wrote:
    Frankly who cares what Tiger Woods does now ?He was the outstanding golfer in the world for over a decade but as a personality never impressed and has proved to be a pretty poor father and husband . His awful confession on television and the coordinated hugs to his mother and the tv advert featuring his dead father must have left alot of people feeling just how low can this guy go to protect his corporate image ? Caddies come and go so this really is a non-story

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    How has he proven himself to be a "pretty poor father"?

    This is "typical" of ...........................................................

  • Comment number 74.

    I take it your a fan Adebayo! My boyhood hero was Nick Faldo so I admire single mindedness and have no problem with players being aloof. Tiger played golf that to a level that I hadn't seen before and his name will be etched in the history books forever. I think it's a big ask to think he can get to those levels again, but it will be interesting to see. In terms of Williams. I think it's inevitable it's a story because it is TW and they won so many majors together, but I think I am right in saying that he told him personally and thanked him for his efforts over the last 13 years. That is a long stint and I suppose a more interesting comparison would be to compare how many caddies Jack had in winning his 20 majors?

  • Comment number 75.

    Frankly I hope this further hastens Woods fall from grace. He has always been a pompous, self-opinionated hypocrite and i revel in him getting his just desserts. He thought he was above the game and all of us who love its traditions...Long may his decent continue.

  • Comment number 76.

    To those that refer to Tiger's power game, he did win an Open using his driver once in 4 rounds. He's

  • Comment number 77.

    As we all judge the man one thing we all have to agree on is the fact that if we had that money and power we would not be able to lead a normal life, The man is a product just like Michael Jordan , Wayne Rooney etc getting rid of Stevie for me means VERDICT FROM THE DOC WAS NOT GOOD & RETIREMENT WILL FOLLOW.

  • Comment number 78.

    Unlikely to be read and pity there is no title blog on the subject but very glad that rory has come out on twitter against townsend.I said this long ago, the whole concept of pathetic analysts in sport commentating on legends and having an opinion on what they can and have only dreamt about.Jay townsend,Jeff Tarango,Robbie Savage,Garth Crooks,Mike Hallett,Paul Allott etc... USELESS and unqualified to be critics of anyone.People and players listen to faldo,miller,mcenroe,souness,wilkins,steve davis,sir ian etc... as they have peer respect.Townsend criticising Rory? Jedward criticising Elvis in my book.

  • Comment number 79.

    WOULD YOU LIKE AN EXTRA £145.50 A YEAR TO SPEND ON CLOTHES OR HOLIDAYS OR SOMETHING ELSE?

    Well its easy, the law only states you need a tv license to watch programs as they are first broadcast, you do not need a tv license should you watch a program a day later on iplayer, hook your tv up to your pc's and laptops now and cash in the useless and costly license.

    http://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/check-if-you-need-one

    With golf broadcasts being generally during the day when you are at work I should imagine you alway catch up on iplayer and what else would you need to watch as it is broadcast on the BBC?

  • Comment number 80.

    Why do we still have to bother with what is happening in the Woods world. The US have placed him and his fromer caddie on a pedestal for years. Wood with Williams on his bag were both a winning team. I do not feel sorry for Woods but Williams has now moved on and is now helping Scott as you can see from his first round at Firestone. As long as the US media keep Woods as their man, in fact he gets the same attention now as he did when he was number 1, we will still have to listen continuosly to his so called comeback. The fact of the matter is the media put him there so they will have to take him away. Any other golfer would not get this amount of attention. Players change caddies now and then for various reasons. Williams is much better off now and will do well. Tiger Woods golf game is in trouble. He is not a happy man, he rarely smiles, is not polite like most pros and must make a sincere attitude adjustment if he is ever to win again.

 

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