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Caddie Steve Williams takes swipe at Tiger Woods

By Bernie Maguire

Caddie Steve Williams grabbed the attention from the new WGC-Bridgestone Invitational champion Adam Scott last night by taking a swipe at his former employer Tiger Woods.

Two weeks after being sacked by Woods, Williams was with Scott as the 31-year-old Australian finished four shots ahead of England's world number one Luke Donald and young American Rickie Fowler — with Woods a massive 18 strokes behind in 37th place.

The New Zealander did not take too kindly to being ditched by Woods for his return from injury.

He was with the former world number one for 13 of his 14 majors, but now he hopes to follow up this success by helping Scott, joint runner-up at The Masters in April, add the USPGA Championship in Atlanta this week.

There’s something of an unwritten rule in golf whereby caddies stay out of the limelight and allow all the focus to remain on the player.

It is rare to hear a caddy take part in any kid of interview, not least after his player has just won a tournament and certainly while Williams was with Woods, he refused to speak to the media.

However, all that changed at Akron when the Kiwi took the opportunity to hit out at Woods and also said that this victory with Scott was his greatest ever success.

“I have been caddieing for more than 30 years now. I have won 145 times and that is the best win of my life,” Williams said afterwards.

“A lot has been said this week and it is great to back it up. I back myself as a frontrunner as a caddie and I have won again.”

There was more from where that came from, with Williams disputing Woods's contention earlier this week that he had sacked the New Zealander “face to face”.

Williams said: “It's the greatest week of my life caddying — I sincerely mean that.”

Williams, 47, will be alongside his new man for the USPGA Championship in Atlanta this week but is still bitter about his sacking by Woods.

“It's the most satisfying win I've ever had, there's no two ways about it,” Williams said.

“I was absolutely shocked that I got the boot to be honest with you.

“I've caddied for the guy for 12 years, I've been incredibly loyal to the guy and I got short-shrifted.”

Williams has been as big a talking point as the players themselves this week, and as Scott approached the 18th hole, fans were shouting not for him but his caddie.

“I had no idea how popular a New Zealander can be, coming from Australia,” Scott said with a laugh afterwards.

“It's surprising. But no, obviously he's a popular guy around here having won now eight times. They appreciate him a lot, and he's a bit of a character.

“It was fun to get support, whether it's for me or him, I don't care, it's the right team.

“Obviously he has such a great knowledge of this golf course and the greens. He's seen a guy play incredible golf, the best golf anyone has ever played around here so many times, so absolutely.

“He really guided me around the course nicely when he needed

to step in and just make a point of where we need to be, he did, and had some great little notes in his book about putts on greens.”

While Rory McIlroy finished in an encouraging joint-sixth position after a 3-under par round which took him to 10-under, there was disappointment for the rest of the Irish players.

Padraig Harrington finished with a final round of a two-over par 72 for a six-over par tally. He was in a share of 59th place — his worst showing in 13 Bridgestone appearances.

Graeme McDowell posted a final round 71 for a nine-over-par total. However he was delighted with the work he had done with coach Pete Cowen on Saturday.

“My golf swing felt more like it today, and that was thanks to the work I did with Pete, but I just couldn't score,” said McDowell.

“So I now have to grind it out the next couple of days and get ready for next weekend.

“It's been a confidence-booster and there's nothing wrong, and besides next week is the last Major of the year and it's a big one.”

Open champion Darren Clarke, will be looking for a far better showing too at the USPGA, than a share of 68th place at 12-over.

“It was a tough start to the week for me but I played better today,” said Clarke.

The Ulsterman will tee-up at Atlanta Country Club on Thursday alongside fellow 2011 Major Champions Schwartzel and McIlroy, all Chubby Chandler players.

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