The caddie for Tiger Woods said he was wrong to kick the lens of a news photographer's camera during the U.S. Open, blaming his decision on hearing too many clicks from too many cameras at the wrong time.
"I lost my cool," Steve Williams said yesterday at the Western Open, where Woods is playing this week. "I shouldn't have done that."
But he offered no apologies for taking a camera away from a fan at Shinnecock Hills and no guarantee that he wouldn't do it again.
"I'm not being a bully," Williams said. "I'm just doing what I have to do to make our jobs easier."
Williams said more photographers are coming onto the practice range to try to shoot Woods' swing sequence, making it difficult for Woods to practice.
Photographers clicked four times during his tee shot on the 18th hole during the final practice round at Shinnecock, causing Woods to pick up his ball and curse them under his breath.
It all boiled over in the second round at the U.S. Open, when Williams walked across the 10th tee and kicked the lens of New York Daily News photographer John Roca.
In the final round, Williams spotted a man taking pictures, walked into the crowd and took the camera. The camera belonged to an off-duty police officer.
"I don't regret taking the camera off the guy," Williams said. "I don't know how he got it on the grounds. If all the security and marshals were doing their job, it wouldn't happen. I'm not sorry about that."
Golf prohibits fans from bringing cameras onto the course once a tournament begins.
Woods has backed up his caddie, though he said recently that Williams "went too far." But he urged tournament officials to take a tougher stand on fans with cameras and news photographers who click at the wrong time.
"Hey, it happened," Woods said Wednesday.
-- Associated Press