Tiger Woods is clearly not a fan of Greg Norman’s rebellious golfing adventure as he targeted Phil Mickelson for following the Shark.
The absence didn’t make Tiger Woods heart more fond of Phil Mickelson.
Woods snatched Mickelson from the PGA Championship Wednesday for his support of the LIV Golf league, citing the legacy of Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer’s PGA Tour in the United States as he dubbed Mickelson’s “polarizing” and divisive comments.
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Mickelson, who became the oldest golf champion when he won last year’s PGA at the age of 50, retired from defending his crown last week and hasn’t played since the controversial comments on LIV Golf. , which is led by Greg Norman with billions of dollars in funding from Saudi Arabia – were made public in February.
“Phil said a few things that I think a lot of us, committed to the tour and committed to the tour legacy, have rejected,” Woods said.
“He took some personal time and we all understand that. But I think some of his views on how the tour could be run, should be run, were very conflicting there. ”
Six-time senior champion Mickelson skipped the Masters last month for the first time since 1994 and will miss his first PGA since his 1993 debut, the last year the southpaw skipped two majors in the same year.
Author Alan Shipnuck released Mickelson’s remarks calling Saudi LIV Golf supporters “scary” with a “horrible human rights record,” but said he was willing to work with them to gain leverage on the PGA tour. of the United States.
Australian legend Norman was slammed last week after to reject concerns about the human rights situation in Saudi Arabia and the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who said “we all made mistakes” in a desperate attempt to defend his new cash golf tour.
The comments sparked international outrage, with former friend and golf partner Wayne Grady telling Norman to “shut his head in shame.”
Woods added: “The viewpoints that Phil created with the tour and what the tour meant to us all polarized.
“We miss the fact that he’s out here. It is a great attraction for the game of golf. He’s just taking his time and we all wish him the best when he comes back.
“Obviously we will have differences of opinion, as you see the tour, and we will start from there.”
Woods said he didn’t contact Mickelson and said he didn’t know if the problems needed to be resolved.
“He has his own opinion of where he sees the game of golf going. I have my point of view, ”Woods said.
“I just think what Jack and Arnold did at the start of the tour… I just think there’s a legacy to that. I still think the tour has so much to offer, so many opportunities.
“I understand different points of view, but I believe in legacies. I believe in big leagues. I believe in great events, in comparison with historical figures of the past “.
Also, Woods said, if that means saying no to A $ 35 million events like the opening of LIV Golf next month in London.
“There’s a lot of money out there,” Woods said. “But it’s just like any other sport. You have to go out there and earn it … It just isn’t guaranteed upfront. “
Other players were simply disappointed not to have the reigning champion in the PGA.
“Phil has to do what Phil has to do,” said second Spanish US Open champion Jon Rahm. “I would have liked to have seen him defend. But he has to do what’s best for him.
“I can’t say he makes me miserable as long as he’s doing what’s best for him.”
Four-time major winner Rory McIlroy called him “unlucky” and “sad” Mickelson was unable to play.
“This is supposed to be a celebration,” McIlroy said. “He won an important championship at the age of 50. Perhaps it was his last big moment in the game of golf. I think he should be here this week and celebrate the monumental milestone he reached last year. ”
PGA of America CEO Seth Waugh called Mickelson’s absence “the elephant in the room” and said he spoke with Mickelson before, during and after his decision not to play.
“His court called and said he is not ready to play. Obviously we respect that. We understand that, “Waugh said.
“It’s been going a long way.”
Originally published as Tiger Woods has no sympathy for Phil Mickelson for ties to Greg Norman