Tiger Woods conceded yesterday that his caddie "probably went too far" by kicking over a photographer's lens and taking another camera from someone in the gallery at the U.S. Open.
But he also suggested tournament officials need to do a better job regulating cameras in the crowd and disciplining news photographers who take pictures in the middle of his swing.
Woods was never in contention in his eighth consecutive major without winning. He tied for 17th at 10-over 290, his sixth straight major over par.
His temper flared last Wednesday morning during his final practice round when photographers twice clicked during his swing on the 18th hole, causing him to halt his swing and eventually pick up his ball from the tee.
At the start of the second round, a photographer for the New York Daily News said caddie Steve Williams kicked over his camera as he was taking pictures of Woods during his practice swing.
In the final round, Williams saw someone in the gallery take a picture of Woods, walked into the crowd and took his camera away. It belonged to an off-duty police officer. Cameras are not allowed once the tournament begins.
"It is important to understand that the crowds at certain tournaments can get out of hand," Woods said in a monthly newsletter on his Web site. "Steve and I know that he probably went too far and we will make sure that does not happen again. However, Steve was just trying to protect me and let his emotions get the best of him."
USGA Executive Director David Fay said on the NBC telecast of the final round that he instructed the rules official with the group to tell Williams to let security handle problems with the gallery.
"It's understandable at a certain level what he's trying to do, but we have professionals out there to deal with this," Fay said.
-- Associated Press