Players Championship Marshal: Tiger Lied, Lacked Character
After Tiger Woods won his second Players Championship on Sunday and Sergio Garcia claimed he had been the "victim" in his flap with Woods over the weekend, a Players marshal revealed that Woods's account of what happened on the second hole in the third round when he was paired with Garcia was not true and said the world's top-ranked golfer's comments lacked character.
In the rain-shortened third round of The Players Championship last weekend, Garcia was frustrated that he hit a poor approach shot on the second hole and blamed it on the commotion Woods caused when he pulled a five-wood out of his bag before Garcia finished hitting his shot.
Woods claimed the marshals told him Garcia had already hit his ball.
According to Sports Illustrated, "the marshals were surprised" by Woods's comments.
Gary Anderson, one of the marshals, told Sports Illustrated, “He didn’t ask us nothing, and we didn’t say nothing. We’re told not to talk to the players.”
John North, "the chief marshal for the first three holes" who "stood over Woods’s ball to protect it from the throng and was five feet away when Woods played his shot," also said the marshals did not say anything to Woods.
“Nothing was said to us and we certainly said nothing to him,” North said. “I was disappointed to hear him make those remarks. We’re there to help the players and enhance the experience of the fans. He was saying what was good for him. It lacked character.”
According to Sports Illustrated, North is a graduate of the Naval Academy, served in Vietnam, and is a FedEx pilot who "donates his round on the Stadium course for being a volunteer to the Wounded Warriors project."
Video replays showed the commotion happened as Garcia was standing over his ball and not during his back swing. Garcia, who had been playing out of turn, bogeyed the hole, and seem steamed.
“You have to pay attention to what’s going on because the other guy is hitting. You do something when you’re in the crowd, and the crowd is going to respond," Garcia told NBC Sports during a rain delay on Saturday.
Woods then said, “The marshals, they told me he already hit, so I pulled a club and was getting ready to play my shot, and then I hear his comments afterward and it’s not real surprising that he’s complaining about something.”
Though the commotion Woods caused should not have impacted the mercurial and sensitive Spaniard, who was far from being the "victim," Woods's comments, which apparently were not truthful, will not help Woods's image, which took a hit after the ball-drop fiasco at the Masters, after a stellar weekend on the Pete Dye golf course at Sawgrass.