AUGUSTA (Ga.) — Former Masters champion Fred CouplesHe didn’t retract his comments last month about LIV Golf League members who had criticized the PGA Tour following its departure.
Couples stated that he doesn’t dislike any of these players who have defected from the LIV Golf League, which was being financed by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund. However he does not like some of their comments.
Couples said, “I have no problem whatsoever with any of them — but please don’t bash a tour in which I have invested 43 years.” It bothers me. They don’t bother. They really don’t bother. They’re golfers. I am a golfer. They all have my respect.”
Couples referred last month to three-time Masters champions during a PGA Tour Champions breakfast held in Newport Beach. Phil MickelsonSpain’s “nutbag” Sergio GarciaAs a “clown”
Couples shared the following: “If you give Phil Mickelson $200 million at 52 to shoot 74 or 75, God bless,” they said.
On Monday, Couples said: “On my [radio]show I’ve said to everyone, “Sergio is among the top 10 player I’ve ever seen hit the ball.” If he’s going make comments about the tour that i play, I will comment back. If it’s offensive, I will apologize but they’re not on my tour. Have fun and play.
Mickelson and Garcia are two of six Masters champions who are currently competing in the LIV Golf League. Dustin Johnson, Charl Schwartzel, Patrick ReedAnd Bubba WatsonThey are the other. They’re all expected at a champions dinner hosted in honor of the defending champion. Scottie SchefflerTuesday night
Couples stated that he was not expecting anything else. “I have made comments, but they must understand that if I look at anything they’ve ever said, they will see that I call myself the same thing I call them. I don’t think they should criticize the PGA Tour, or anybody else, so just go play golf. Tomorrow night will be a wonderful dinner and lots of fun.
The Masters, which begins Thursday, marks the first time that many players from the LIV Golf League (PGA Tour) have competed in the same event since the 150th Open Championship in St. Andrews in July. Augusta was invited to 18 LIV Golf League players.
Couples stated, “Brooks Koepka is someone I love, Dustin Johnson is someone I absolutely love.” “I don’t think I’m good enough to be paired up with those guys. They’re going with those who will win this thing. But I have no problem playing with anyone on LIV tour. I don’t think so.
Couples, 63, played Monday practice round with Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroyAnd Tom Kim. Woods will make his second start since missing the cut at St. Andrews.
Couples said Woods was “really, really good.” “He pulled a couple drives. Last year, however, we played. [in a practice round]He never missed one shot. It’s something I’ve never seen before. He’s just trying his best to walk around and have fun.
Woods still has severe injuries to his right leg, foot, and ankle from a car accident outside Los Angeles in Feb 2021. Woods said that surgeons almost had to amputate the right foot.
Couples stated, “You know, he doesn’t really ask me a lot.” “I believe that it’s not something I send him or talk to him about, but what our conversations are all about. I think he’s ready when he tells me he’s only going to play four events and Augusta is one. It’s likely not going to go smoothly, but I believe he’ll be fine.”
Woods placed 47th in the Masters last year, his first official start after 508 days.