EVEN Tiger Woods's most ardent supporters have turned against him over his club-kicking antics at last week's Masters. The former Ryder Cup captain Paul Azinger called him an "embarrassment to the game".
Woods apologised for volleying his nine-iron 10 yards from the 16th tee on Friday. He is almost certain to be fined for it, as well as for cursing.
"Tiger's antics this week were an embarrassment to the game, to the membership at Augusta," said Azinger. "I was really disappointed to see him carry on that way. He's not trying to endear himself to anybody... I thought he acted like the south-end half of a northbound mule."
Woods, who won the Arnold Palmer Invitational three weeks ago, finished 41st at Augusta. Azinger said: "I think his brain is full of swing thoughts, not swing feelings." The word is that Woods travelled to Bahamas after his win at Bay Hill and worked on developing a high draw - against the advice of his coach, Sean Foley.
Azinger, the 1993 US PGA champion, said: "I can't compare my career to Tiger Woods' career, for sure, but I'll say this: in the 28 years I've played golf for a living I've never been as lost as he looked out there."