Less than 48 hours after finding themselves at the centre of controversy over “The Concession That Never Was”, Matt Kuchar and Sergio Garcia put on a united front in a social media video in which they insisted: “We’re all good.”
The pair’s quarter-final match at Austin Country Club cast a shadow over the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, after Kuchar revealed he hadn’t given a short putt to Garcia, which the Spaniard missed.
The incident quickly became the talk of social media, with both players coming in for fierce criticism: Garcia, for not checking that the putt was given; Kuchar, for not giving it.
“We’ve just been going over what’s been going with our match and the aftermath,” said Kuchar. “What’s gone with the aftermath is just incorrect, wrong and shouldn’t have happened.
“I want to tell you that Sergio handled the thing extremely well. When he missed the putt, we came off seven. He said, ‘You know what, I missed it, it’s your hole.’ I told him bad I felt. It didn’t feel right at all. I never want to win on a technicality.
“We teed off on eight and I said, ‘Man, I really don’t like how this has played out’. Sergio offered a suggestion but never said to give him a hole. He gave me an option or two of how to play it out. But I want everybody to know Sergio understood it was a loss of hole, and said ‘I get it’, and handled it extremely well.”
Garcia added: “Obviously, I know I made a mistake on seven and didn’t give him time to say that’s good even though, obviously, we all, in our minds, thought it was good because it was a short putt. But at the end of the day, I made a mistake. He unfortunately didn’t know how to make up for what happened but it’s all good. We’re all good.”
This raises more questions than it answers. If Sergio didn’t ask for Kuchar to concede a hole – which, incidentally, on-course microphones captured him doing – then what were the option he gave Kuchar? And if Kuchar “never wants to win on a technicality”, why didn’t he apply them?
You get the feeling this has some way still to run...