Tiger Woods’ struggles on the golf course extended to outside the ropes on Wednesday night when a jury found his company, ETW, guilty of deceptive and unfair trade practices in a civil lawsuit at the Miami-Dade County Circuit Court, according to a published report.
A day after Woods finished off a T-25 showing at the WGC-Cadillac Championship at Doral in obvious pain from a back injury, the world’s No. 1-ranked golfer testified in the lawsuit for more than 45 minutes before a six-person, all-female jury, the Miami Herald reported.
Miami resident Bruce Matthews’ business, Gotta Have It Golf Inc., believed Woods was in violation of a 2001 licensing agreement after the 14-time major winner allegedly did not provide a set amount of autographs and photographs, according to the newspaper.
On Wednesday, the jury awarded damages of $668,000, which will actually be closer to $1.3 million with interest, Eric Isicoff, one of Matthews’ attorneys, told the Herald. Matthews’ request to have more than $1 million in legal fees reimbursed by Woods still is pending.
The newspaper said Woods plans to appeal the ruling.
Despite his injury, Woods is planning on playing the Arnold Palmer Invitational, which starts March 20 in Orlando, Fla. His next expected start after that will be the year’s first major, the Masters.
Tiger-Stevie feud remains unsettled
Apparently it’s not over between Tiger and Stevie.
While they walked the fairways together in the same group for the first two rounds last week at Trump International Doral, the former player/caddie duo still has unfinished business, according to Williams.
“I haven’t sorted anything out with him,” Williams explained during an interview with Australia’s Fox Sports. “There’s been a lot of … this, that and the other … but the hatchet hasn’t been buried.”
Williams and Woods paired to win 13 majors from 1999-2008, though the Kiwi was abruptly fired during the summer of 2011 while Woods was battling injury. Williams has since looped full-time for Adam Scott, and guided the Aussie to a green jacket in April.
Williams offered comments last year that seemed to indicate the rift between the two was a thing of the past.
“There’s an old saying that time heals all wounds,” Williams said in August. “It’s been a couple of years and, as I said, time has a way of healing.”
His comments this week, though, paint a more unresolved picture.
“It’s just personal things and a difference of opinions on how things went down,” Williams said Tuesday. “I need to sort that out with him.”
Just two days removed from the world No. 1 carding a final-round 78 and watching Patrick Reed – dressed in Woods’ trademark red-and-black Sunday attire – triumph at Doral, Williams also shared his view that Woods’ once-legendary intimidation factor over the field is not what it used to be.
“I always felt that was a big thing, that guys were intimidated by him,” Williams said. “(But) there’s no intimidation factor anymore, and that counts a lot.”