Gazzolo Column: Tiger, Sergio gave us something to talk about

By By Jim Gazzolo / American Press

When Tiger Woods pulled out his 3-wood last Saturday, it did more than distract Sergio Garcia. It opened old wounds between

the two.

Garcia claims that Woods should know better, that he knew the fans would react just as Sergio was ready to hit his shot from

across the fairway.

To Tiger, Sergio was out of sight, out of mind. Garcia’s shot was not a good one as the two fought for the lead.

Woods later said a marshal told him it was OK to hit. The marshal has come out and said that was not true, that he never told

Tiger any such thing.

Liar, liar, golf clubs on fire.

Either way, the golfers fought a war of words all weekend long.

In the end, Garcia appears to have come out the winner in the battle of whiners. However, it was Woods who won the tournament,

and he did it when Garcia imploded.

Sergio had a “Tin Cup” moment, firing not one but two shots into the water on No. 17 when he and Tiger were tied for the lead.

For good measure, Garcia sent his tee shot on the final hole into the water.

Three shots gone bad when the pressure was on. Typical Sergio.

For the record, Woods was not around when Garcia was draining golf balls into ponds.

As Woods picked up the winning trophy and check, Garcia was left wondering what happened. Simply, he was done in by the tougher


Woods will find a way to win if given any chance. Under the same circumstances, Garcia will find a way to lose.

That is why one is known as the best golfer of his generation and one of the greatest of all time and the other is considered

the best never to have won a major.

But now they can become true rivals. I guess if you can’t develop a rivalry by winning, exchanging harsh words is the next

best thing. And it isn’t bad for golf either.

The sport has been waiting for somebody to challenge Woods on the course. That has yet to happen, so Garcia taking shots at

him is a way to keep gaining some interest heading into the summer of majors.

The U.S. Open is now more exciting, especially if both could play well. If nothing else, they gave golf fans something to

talk about.

Woods being involved in this is nothing surprising. He has never been old school when it comes to actions on the course.

He has been heard cursing, complaining and done more than his fair share of whining. So Woods would seem to know just what

a distraction his actions can be. You have to think he either did it on purpose or didn’t care what he had done.

He has yet to apologize even though replays showed he was at fault.

This from a guy who often yells at photographers for clicking off shots during his backswing, or takes a swipe at fans moving

around too loudly.

Woods has been the leader of the whine club in the past.

I have always found it amazing that

football players can focus while crowds scream and other players are set

to assault them.

Or that basketball players can shoot free throws while fans behind

the basket wave wildly. Baseball players don’t ask for

quiet, yet golfers seem to think they can ask people to pay big

bucks to watch them hit a ball that is sitting perfectly still

and not make a sound.

Golfers almost demand silence.

Now we have Woods and Garcia turning golf into the WWE when it comes to the interview process.

On Sunday, Garcia took better shots at Woods than he did on the final two holes of the tournament. It made for must-see golf


Hey, if you can’t beat them, berate them.

If nothing else, Garcia and Woods have taught us golf can have a real feud.

At least it gives us a reason to watch.

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Jim Gazzolo is managing sports editor. Email him at