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Annika rips Wie for WD, questions injury

Those are becoming hard to find.

The hysteria over Wie was at a high last year at Bulle Rock. She had narrowly missed qualifying for the U.S. Open at Winged Foot, stopped only by her putting at the Canoe Brook qualifier. She was poised to become golf's youngest major champion until a wayward wedge from the 16th fairway of the final round at the LPGA Championship.

But her game began to disintegrate that summer. She was taken away on a stretcher from the John Deere Classic. She finished dead last in consecutive weeks in Switzerland and Pennsylvania competing against the men. She failed to break 80 at the Casio World Open on the Japanese tour. She even struggled against the women, finishing 17th in a field of 20 at the Samsung World Championship.

Her troubles now go beyond the wrist injury and her swing.

She talked endlessly Tuesday about wanting to have fun, yet there was a quiver in her voice, and no one would have been surprised to see a tear. One minute she begged for patience, the next she was defiant as ever.

Along with public criticism from Sorenstam and private skepticism from a host of others, she was further rattled when LPGA Tour commissioner Carolyn Bivens spoke to her camp about her behavior in the Ginn pro-am.

"I think it was very insulting because I tried my best," Wie said. "It's my sixth year out here, and I played in numerous pro-ams, and I think it's ridiculous to make any false accusations about me. I just hope she gets better information."

The nature of the complaints remained a mystery. Wie said she was busy with housing applications at Stanford and "way too many other things to stress about," and suggested someone take it up with her manager or Bivens.

"You should talk to the commissioner," agent Greg Nared said.

Bivens did not make herself available, saying through a spokeswoman that the conversation was between her and the Wies.

By all accounts, an LPGA Tour official was involved in discussions with the Wie camp about the tour's infamous "Rule 88" shortly before she withdrew. It would have been interesting to see what the tour would have done had Wie finished her round and shot 88 or worse, because it has a recent history of amending the rules for a certain teenager from Hawaii.

Remember, the rules were changed in 2005 that allowed Wie to become the first amateur to compete in the LPGA Championship. That was the same year the Women's British Open no longer counted against the limit of six LPGA exemptions.

Wie, whose class at Punahou School went through commencement without her Saturday night in Honolulu, said she would be patient with herself and asked others to do the same.

"I'm only human," she said.

But she is no longer the prodigy that amazed the golf world with such power for such youth.

She is 17, but no longer a kid.

There was a time the LPGA Tour needed Wie a lot more than Wie needed the LPGA Tour. That might not be the case anymore.

People are far more willing to forgive a bad round than bad manners.

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