A day after marshals at the Players Championship accused Tiger Woods of lying about having been told Sergio Garcia had hit his ball on the second hole during the third round, other marshals said on Tuesday Woods was “basically” telling the truth because they had told him Garcia had struck his ball, even though they did so after Woods pulled a club out of the bag that created a commotion in the gallery.
According to the Florida-Times Union in Jacksonville, two marshals, both of whom were walking with the Woods-Garcia group on Saturday, said Woods was not lying.
“It is not true and definitely unfair to Tiger,” Brian Nedrich, one of the other marshals, told the Times-Union, according to ESPN. “That’s because I was the one Tiger heard say that Sergio had hit.’
Lance Paczkowski, the other marshal, agreed with Nedrich about the events.
After Paczkowski said Garcia had not hit, Nedrich yelled at Paczkowski, “No … he’s already hit.”
“Tiger had already taken his club, but we did tell him that Sergio had hit,” Nedrich said. “It’s disingenuous to suggest that Tiger is a liar because he got a minor detail wrong. Basically, he told the truth.”
Added Paczkowski: “Tiger Woods did not lie,” Paczkowski said. “Was there a small mistake in what he remembered? Yes. But I don’t think it rises to the level of lying.”
Woods and Garcia got into a flap because Garcia felt Woods pulled a club out of his bag before Garcia hit his approach shot. Garcia bogeyed the second hole after an errant approach shot. Replays showed the commotion caused after Woods pulled a club out of his bag occurred while Garcia was over his ball and not during his backswing.
After Garcia told NBC that Woods needed to be more careful, Woods told the network that marshals had told him Garcia had already hit. According to these accounts, it seems like Woods started to pull his club out of the bag before Garcia hit and the marshals told him Garcia had hit after he pulled his club out of the bag.
Woods won his second Players Championship after Garcia hit three balls into the water on the final two holes on Sunday. Garcia claimed he was the “victim” after the tournament.