Steve Williams.
Steve Williams. Janna Dixon

Scott, Norman defend Williams

AUSTRALIAN golfer Adam Scott has again defended his golf caddie Steve Williams after he called his former boss Tiger Woods a black a***hole.

At a caddies' awards party last week, Williams was given a light-hearted award for an interview he gave following the win of his new employer Adam Scott at the Bridgestone Invitational.

The Bridgestone was two weeks after Woods fired Williams.

When asked about the interview, Williams replied, "It was my aim to shove it up that black a***hole".

Williams has denied the comment was racist, saying it was made in jest.

Scott has defended Williams but yesterday issued a statement saying he did not believe Williams intended to be racist in his comments but acknowledged they may have caused offence.

"I have discussed this matter directly with Steve and he understands and supports my view on this subject. I also accept Steve's apology, knowing that he meant no racial slur with his comments.

"On behalf of my team, I apologise personally to everyone that was offended by the reported comments,'' he said.

Greg Norman also defended Williams, saying he did not believe he was a racist.

"We've all made stupid comments at stupid times. Unfortunately his stupid comment became global news.

"I know he probably regrets saying it, but I guarantee you in that room on that night there was probably some heavier things said,'' he is reported as saying.

Michael Campbell said the comments were simply "Steve's personality".

"Is he a racist? No. He's one of my best mates," The Herald Sun reported.

However, not everyone in the golfing world agreed.

Fred Couples said: "If he was my caddie he would be gone by now.

"If he has that sort of anger for a pretty good guy, then I don't want him around me," he is reported as saying.

Williams later posted an apology on his website but maintained his comments were taken out of context. "It was a fun sort of thing, everyone laughed their heads off," he said.

"If you can't have a bit of fun, what is the world coming to?"

PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem and European Tour chief executive George O'Grady issued a statement yesterday saying they spoke for the International Federation of PGA Tours that it "feels strongly there is no place for any form of racism in ours or any other sport", ESPN said.

"We consider the remarks of Steve Williams, as reported, entirely unacceptable in whatever context," the statement said.

"We are aware that he has apologised fully and we trust we will not hear remarks ever gain. Based on this, we consider the matter closed, and we will have no further comment."

Williams may come face to face with Woods in the next couple of weeks at the Australian Open and Presidents Cup at Royal Melbourne.