Tiger Woods, Steve Williams just miss final pairing

Tiger Woods, right, examines the second fairway with

Tiger Woods, right, examines the second fairway with caddie Steve Williams during the final round of the 107th U.S. Open Golf Championship at the Oakmont Country Club in Oakmont, Pa. (June 17, 2007) (Credit: AP)

LYTHAM ST. ANNES, England -- Tiger Woods will play in the twosome ahead of the one that includes leader Adam Scott in Sunday's final round of the British Open.

Scott's caddie, Steve Williams, was on Woods' bag for 13 years before they parted acrimoniously. Scott was asked if he had considered the possibility of being paired with Woods while Williams walked along with the final group.

"It wouldn't have bothered me at all,'' said Scott, who has a four-shot lead -- five over Woods. "I would have been happy. I'm just happy to be in this position.''

It might have bothered Woods. Last August, Scott won the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. Williams, who carried for Woods in 13 of his major victories, called new boss Scott's victory "the greatest win of his career," an obvious jab at his former boss.

Then, during a caddies awards party in Shanghai last November, Williams, at the dais, made a racial slur against Tiger as part of a smart-aleck remark. Williams met Woods and apologized a few days later in Sydney before the Australian Open.

"It was a wrong thing to say, something that we both acknowledge," Woods said then. "He did apologize. It was hurtful, certainly, but life goes forward.''

Scott was asked whether linking with Williams and switching to a belly putter were the two biggest decisions he had made in his career.

"I was very fortunate on the timing with Steve,'' said Scott, who is Australian. Williams is from New Zealand. "As for the long putter, that decision had to be made, I think, at some point.''

Scott said after he made a beautiful pitch out of a bunker to within inches of the cup on the 17th green Saturday, Williams chided him.

"He knew what I was thinking,'' Scott said. "I was kind of lining that [bunker shot] up thinking I might make it. And he was actually kind of having a go at me that I didn't make it, because I told him 'I think I can handle this one.' It really wasn't tricky. It was probably the smallest lip of any bunker on the course.''

After firing Williams, Woods has used Joe LaCava, who formerly worked for Fred Couples.

Scott said Williams' experience in majors helped him during a hectic third round Saturday.

"There was a circus out there today,'' Scott said. "Steve actually warned me about how many people are inside the ropes late in an Open and just having to wait a little longer for people to walk across the green in front, following the group in front.''

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Newsday Sports on Facebook

advertisement | advertise on newsday