Easing Toward Retirement, Steve Williams Reflects on Tiger, Norman and Other Highs and Lows of His Caddying Career

Steve Williams, Adam Scott Steve Williams, left, has caddied for Adam Scott since 2011. (Credit: Getty Images)



opened up this week to Brian Wacker of PGATOUR.COM







"I left New Zealand with the intention of caddying for Tiger in the U.S. Open that year. I was told by his agent he was going to play, even though he had been hurt for the previous month. I had my father-in-law with me and a friend flying in from Oregon who was going to come to the U.S. Open, too. But when I got to the States, I learned (Tiger) wasn’t playing, so we went to Oregon, where I have a summer house. That’s when I got a call from Adam Scott, who had recently let go of his longtime caddie Tony Navarro. Adam heard Tiger pulled out and wondered where I was. I phoned Tiger about it and he said, ‘No problem.’ After some thought, though, he didn’t agree with it. Tiger changed his mind. Well, I’d already told Adam I would be there. I wasn’t prepared to ring Adam up and say I can’t do it. I’m a man of my word. I had no idea I was going to get fired over it. I also hadn’t worked a lot. Not that I needed the money, but I wanted to work. I was told (by Tiger) after U.S. Open that I no longer had a job and it’s as simple as that.
"Things don’t always transpire the way you want them to. The disappointment for me was that he claims he fired me at AT&T. He didn’t. He fired me over the phone after the U.S. Open. I went to the AT&T knowing I didn’t have a job (with Tiger). That’s just the fact. The conversation wasn’t that heated, but I knew he was upset and I tried to explain my side. It also wasn’t easy sitting around not knowing when you’re going to work. Adam is a friend of mine and I saw that as a great opportunity to caddie for a friend (in the U.S. Open and at the AT&T National)."

"I’m hard-pressed to go past the 10th hole in the playoff at Augusta National with Adam and Angel Cabrera. Convincing Tiger to hit lob wedge instead of sand wedge on 18 at Torrey Pines in the final round of the 2008 U.S. Open was a big call, but it wasn’t like Tiger was trying to win his first major. Major championships are very hard to win -- Tiger made it look so easy, I don’t think a lot of people outside the game realized what he was doing. It ain’t that easy. No Australian had won at Augusta. When Adam read the putt, I told him his read wasn’t close and it broke a lot more than he thought. I hadn’t seen the putt before but as I walked down the fairway the first thing I said to myself was ‘It’s quicker than you think and breaks more than you think.’ Everything on the other side of that green was slower than you thought, and the same was true with fast putts. He might’ve missed that putt and not gone on to win and then he’s still trying to win his first major."

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