TIGER WOODS last night said that Sergio Garcia did not apologise in person when the pair met on the practice range ahead of the US Open at Merion this week.
Garcia escaped punishment for what could be construed as a racist remark about Woods after offering an unreserved apology for his ‘‘stupid and out of place’’ comments at the European Tour’s annual awards ceremony last month.
During a Q&A session involving the full Ryder Cup team, the 33-year-old was asked if he would invite Woods to dinner one night at Merion to end the feud between them, which resurfaced at the Players Championship.
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‘‘We will have him round every night,’’ Garcia said. ‘‘We will serve fried chicken.’’ Garcia initially issued an apology overnight for his ‘‘silly remark’’ and then held a press conference the following afternoon to apologise again, but was asked by Woods’ agent to wait until the US Open to speak to Woods in person.
That occurred on the practice range on Monday with Woods accepting Garcia’s proferred handshake, but the world number one said a direct apology was not made.
‘‘We have not had time for that,’’ Woods said. ‘‘We did not discuss anything. He came up and said ‘hi’ and that was it. It’s already done. It’s time for the US Open.’’ Woods faced just two questions on the subject in his pretournament press conference, although his niece Cheyenne was able to ask a question about how he relaxes off the course. ‘‘I was not expecting that,’’ Woods said with a smile.
Woods initially responded to Garcia’s apologies via Twitter, writing: ‘‘The comment that was made wasn’t silly. It was wrong, hurtful and clearly inappropriate.
I’m confident that there is real regret that the remark was made.’’ He reiterated those sentiments at the Memorial Tournament a fortnight ago, where he shot the worst nine-hole score of his professional career with an outward 44 in the third round at Muirfield Village.