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Golf News: - Posted 15th October 1997

Monty apologises to US team for Ryder Cup remarks

 

St Andrews, Scotland - Colin Montgomerie has written to US Ryder Cup captain Tom Kite and members of the US team over the row which had other US Tour players talking of cold-shouldering him on his next visit to the States.

Montgomerie issued a statement today which said he hoped the controversy over remarks he made prior to the victory at Valderrama was now over.

Europe's No 1, who plays for Scotland in the Alfred Dunhill Cup at St Andrews this week, was quoted as saying, among other things, that Brad Faxon "is going through a divorce and mentally I don't think he will be with it."

Fred Funk responded to that by telling the American GolfWeek magazine: "He is the jerk of the world as far as I'm concerned - and you can write that down because when I see him I'm going to tell him to his face."

Bob Estes added: "Who's Monty going to play practice rounds with? I always knew he was a cry-baby. I respect his skills, but when he starts with the low blows...that's poor.

"I think when he comes to play over here he's going to get the cold shoulder from a lot of guys."

Loren Roberts stated: "Taking shots at a guy's personal life is a little too much. You don't want to alienate guys. It's unfortunate."

Faxon himself said after beating Montgomerie in the World Match Play championship quarter-finals last week: "I hope Monty does not get cold-shouldered. I don't think he was being mean-spirited when he said the stuff he did."

The Scot prefaced his statement by saying: "I've had better weekends I must admit. I've put this together and hopefully this will finish it. I don't want to answer questions."

His statement read: "In the light of some of the recent press coverage both in Europe and the US regarding alleged comments of mine concerning members of the US Ryder Cup team I would like today to present to you what I believe to be a more balanced view of the issues.

"When I was asked to comment on the US Ryder Cup team my remarks did not come out as I intended and I regret that this has occurred. I especially regret the personal nature of remarks about members of the team.

"I have written to each person on the American team who was named in the press and to captain Tom Kite and I have made special efforts to discuss this situation with Brad Faxon and I shall always be grateful to him and shall respect his understanding which, under such circumstances, has been so professional.

"As regards some of the reporting of my comments, my words have at the very least been taken out of context and twisted to suit the purposes of the writer.

"It goes without saying that I have great respect for the performances and abilities of all the players in the US Ryder Cup team and I am pleased to count many of them among my friends.

"It has been particularly disappointing to me that other parties not directly related to the situation have taken it upon themselves to comment so aggressively on uncorroborated and distorted reports.

"Nevertheless, I would hope that this issue can now be considered at an end."