A mild “skirmish” has existed between Woods and Garcia since 1999, but was escalated to a battle of words during the Players Championship, and has continued to the present day. Woods has said that they should both just get on with their games, and put it in the past. It appears that Garcia is unable to do that.
It is unexpected that Garcia will receive any fines or suspension, but he may have taken a much larger hit. His primary sponsor, “TaylorMade”-adidas, has decided to ‘distance themselves’ from him.
“Sergio Garcia’s recent comment was offensive and in no way aligns with TaylorMade-adidas Golf’s values and corporate culture,” the company said in a statement. “We have spoken with Sergio directly and he clearly has regret for his statement and we believe he is sincere. We discussed with Sergio that his comments are clearly out of bounds and we are continuing to review the matter.”
Garcia has openly stated his regrets over his remark, and has apologized to Woods.
“As soon as I left the dinner, I started getting a sick feeling in my body,” Garcia told reporters gathered for this week’s BMW PGA Championship in England. “I didn’t really sleep at all last night. I felt like my heart was going to come out of my body. I had this sick feeling all day.”
Damon Hack is the co-host of Golf Channel’s “Morning Drive”. An African-American himself, he says he has never had a close relationship with Garcia, but it was cordial. He said that an incident such as this linger for years.
“Sergio is going to have a lot of apologies to make going forward, to Tiger, he’s going to have to answer a lot of questions from reporters,” Hack said after Garcia’s press conference. “He’s going to have to pay the price for the next year, next five years, next 10, we don’t know. It will all be how Sergio handles his behavior going forward.
“This is a hurtful comment; this stings me and it hurts me and I’m sad for Sergio, I’m sad for Tiger, I’m sad for the game of golf that we have to even talk about this,” Hack stated. “But no question the next time I look across from Sergio, will this cross my mind? Absolutely it will.”
In reaction to Garcia’s apology, Woods tweeted:
“The comment that was made wasn’t silly. It was wrong, hurtful and clearly inappropriate…”
Did he think Garcia’s apology was sincere?
“I’m confident that there is real regret that the remark was made.”
About moving on:
“The Players ended nearly two weeks ago and it’s long past time to move on and talk about golf.”
I couldn’t agree more.
The Guardian Express