x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

US Open: Another note in Sergio Garcia's sad song

For the second time in 11 years, Sergio Garcia left a note in the locker of Tiger Woods at the American national championship, presumably apologising again for hurtful remarks the Spaniard made.

Sergio Garcia, left, and Tiger Woods shook hands and then came out swinging ... on the practice greens in preparation for the US Open at Merion Golf Club in Pennsylvania.
Sergio Garcia, left, and Tiger Woods shook hands and then came out swinging ... on the practice greens in preparation for the US Open at Merion Golf Club in Pennsylvania.

The US Open is once again upon us, which means Sergio Garcia must have writer's cramp.

For the second time in 11 years, the star-crossed Spaniard left a note in the locker of Tiger Woods at the American national championship, presumably apologising again for hurtful remarks Garcia made about the world No 1.

After Garcia made a racially insensitive comment last month that drew worldwide headlines, the two met for an impromptu, brief handshake on the practice tee on Monday at Merion Golf Club, site of the 113th US Open this week.

But Garcia did not apologise.

"It wasn't the appropriate place, out of respect to him and other players," Garcia said. "We didn't have time for that," Woods said, making it clear that he is tired of discussing the topic.

Garcia then placed a note in Woods's locker, though he declined to explain the sentiments he conveyed. Garcia apologised profusely for his remarks during a pre-tournament interview session, though whether it will help remains to be seen.

Given the hard-bitten timbre of a typical Philadelphia sports crowd, it could be a long week for Garcia, who was accompanied by a policeman during his practice round Tuesday.

"Hopefully, he can take a look at it," Garcia said of his letter. "It's a big week and I understand that it's difficult to meet up and stuff. So hopefully I'll be able to do it. If not, at least he has read the note and he's happy with that." Garcia said if Woods feels compelled, he can elaborate on the content of the note, which is unlikely to happen, since Woods clearly hopes to distance himself from the episode.

That is, if Woods even bothers to read the note at all.

"Well, I don't think that's for me to say," Garcia said of the words he wrote. "I think that if he wants to show you. I mean, the note is for him, so if he wants to show you, then he can. I don't have any problems with that. But I am not going to be the one showing you."

At the 2002 US Open, Garcia was on the course when the event was hammered by heavy rain.

Afterward, he claimed that if Woods had been caught in the storm, play would have been suspended. Garcia left a note in Woods's locker, presumably apologising for alleging Tiger receives preferential treatment.

When an African-American reporter this week asked Garcia if he understood why his comments three weeks ago about serving Woods "fried chicken" caused such a stir in the States, Garcia seemed repentant and contrite.

Like with his note-writing, he has had plenty of practice.

"That's why I said sorry, because I can obviously see that I hurt a lot of people," Garcia told the writer. "And that doesn't make me feel good, I can tell you that. I wish I could go back in time and take back what I said, but unfortunately, I said it. You know, the only thing I can do is show you my respect from here moving forward."

 

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