ARDMORE (Sporting Alert) — World No. 1 Tiger Woods, the three-time U.S. Open champion, has again stated that he wants to focus on the tournament this coming week, rather than talk about his personal feud with Sergio Garcia.
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7:11 a.m. – Featured Group 1 (Phil Mickelson, Steve Stricker, Keegan Bradley)
1:14 p.m. – Featured Group 2 (Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Adam Scott)
Woods was asked to discuss the happenings between himself and Garcia after the pair shook hands in a statement to put to an end their nasty public spat, but the American wanted to focus more on playing golf.
He did admit that Garcia never personally apologized for the comments he made, which many thought were racial, but he wanted to talk no further on the subject.
“No, (he didn’t apologize). It’s already done,” Woods told reporters.
“We’ve already gone through it all. It’s time for the U.S. Open and we tee it up in two days.”
Woods, who continues to hunt Jack Nicklaus’ record 18 majors, knows that a victory for him this week would also see him joining an elite group of players who have won the U.S. Open four times.
Woods has not won a major tournament in five years, yet he is not bothered and is going into the contest feeling comfortable.
The four players to have already won the U.S. Open four times are Ben Hogan, Willie Anderson, Bobby Jones and Jack Nicklaus.
“I’m not stressed because I know where I’m heading,” says Woods. “I’m comfortable going forward, comfortable with what is in the future.
“I’m more precise with my swing. I’ve been able to work on other parts of my game and make them strengths. It’s all about trying to get better and I feel I am.
“And I’ve contended in majors. Just haven’t gotten it done.
“But you have to keep putting yourself in position to win. If I do that enough times, the odds are better for me to win.”
Woods’ opponents this week acknowledged that the American, who have won four times already this year, is on form and will be a strong candidate to win at Merion Golf Club in Philadelphia.
Thursday’s first round coverage
9 a.m. – 3 p.m. – Live coverage on ESPN
3 p.m. – 5 p.m. – Live coverage on NBC
5 p.m. – 7 p.m. – Live coverage on ESPN