- Steve Williams reveals what life was like on Tiger's bag
- The Kiwi's autobiography, 'Out of the Rough', is released today
- Slams Woods' handling of the infidelity saga and on-course antics
Steve Williams has opened up to what life was like on the bag of the 14-time major champion Tiger Woods in his autobiography, ‘Out of the Rough’, saying at times it was though he was ‘his slave’.
The 51-year-old, who caddied for Woods for 13 years and all but one of his major triumphs, also heavily criticised the American’s handling of the infidelity scandal in the book, which is released today.
An excerpt, published in New Zealand on Sunday, revealed that:
- Williams was disappointed that he was linked to Woods’ infidelity, despite knowing nothing about it;
- How Woods didn’t contact him for four months after the news broke;
- That Woods’ televised apology was unnecessary and unnatural;
- How he has no sympathy for what Woods did;
- And how, at times, he was appalled by some of the 39-year-old’s on-course antics.
“Only a handful of his oldest buddies actually had any idea this was going on,” Steve Williams, who now works on a part-time basis for Adam Scott, writes. “I didn't know because Tiger didn't dare tell me. We had such a strong bond and working relationship that there was no way he could let me in on what was happening – he knew my values and that I would have zero tolerance for that kind of behaviour.
“I would have told him straight away that I condemned that kind of activity and, unless he stopped, there would be no conversation – that would be the end of us. I was angry at him for what he'd done – especially what he'd done to Elin – but regardless of the morality of the matter, he was still a friend in trouble and I was going to stick by him.
"I did that even though people were accusing me of being an enabler, an accomplice, saying I was lying when I stated clearly that I knew nothing about this. For months on end, my life was absolutely miserable. People in my local community would front up to me at the shops and call me a liar to my face, and ask, ‘what are you doing with him?’”
Once the news broke, Williams didn’t hear from Woods for four months and while the latter was incurring the wrath of the media and did a televised apology, Williams felt that the action was totally unnecessary.
“I didn't see the need for Tiger to make that televised statement – I didn't think a public apology was warranted. Yes, he needed to apologise to the people closest to him – his family and friends, me, Kirsty, his sponsors – but to hold an internationally televised press conference to say sorry to the world? That was way over the top.
“It was a peculiar thing to watch too, as he was so awkward in his delivery and choice of words. I turned off the TV thinking, ‘that's not the Tiger I know’. It was heavily scripted with nothing natural about it.”
And despite feeling sorry for Woods in having to live out his private life in the public eye for those months, Williams has no sympathy for what he did.
“I didn't have any sympathy for him over what he'd done. I believe you're in charge of your own actions and I have no sympathy for people who get addicted to drugs or gambling or sex. People make choices in their lives and he had chosen to do this. But I did have sympathy for the way he'd had to suffer in front of the world when others would have been able to sort out their mess in private.”
Woods is well-known for his bad temper on the course and while Williams says he could live with that as it only flared up occasionally, he had other bad habits that upset him a lot more.
“One thing that really pissed me off was how he would flippantly toss a club in the general direction of the bag, expecting me to go over and pick it up. I felt uneasy about bending down to pick up his discarded club – it was like I was his slave.
“The other thing that disgusted me was his habit of spitting at the hole if he missed a putt. Tiger listened to what I had to say, the air was cleared and we got on with it – his goal was to be the best player in history and my goal was to keep working as best I could to help make that happen.”
Steve Williams :: Out of the Rough
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