Woods avoids pay row

Tiger Woods has side-stepped the controversy surrounding his appearance in the Australian Masters in November.

Tiger Woods has side-stepped the controversy surrounding his appearance in the Australian Masters in November.

Woods is reportedly being paid US$3m (€2.2m) to play at Kingston Heath in Melbourne, with Victoria taxpayers covering half of that via the government’s support for the event.

That has not gone down well in the current economic climate and with Victoria still reeling from the recent bush fires, while five-time Open champion Peter Thomson believes it will also damage the Australian Open held in early December.

Woods has become a master of answering questions without answering the question and, speaking ahead of the Arnold Palmer Invitational which starts today, said: “This is the only place that doesn’t have appearance fees.

“Most of the guys get appearance fees to play around the world. I’ve played all around the world and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed going.

“I haven’t played in Australia since the Presidents Cup (1998). I’ve always wanted to get down there and play more in the Aussie sand belt because that is my favourite area to play. I’ve always enjoyed it, and I’m really looking forward to getting down there and playing.

“Obviously I know there’s some controversy behind it, but I’m really looking forward to getting down there and playing and competing.”

Victoria premier John Brumby predicted Woods’ appearance would bring up to US$19m (€13.9m) in economic benefits and Stuart Appleby also defended the move.

“It will be great for the game and bring out a lot of people who haven’t seen him before, in person, not on a video game,” he said.

“There are a lot of people hurting in Australia, and they might look negatively that one guy is paid three million dollars just to turn up.

“The common man won’t understand the business model because the government is paying for it. They might not see the money he brings in.”

More in this section

Ireland's Top 10 Hidden Gems

Ten of the best golf courses in Ireland that too few people know about.

Read Here
Sport
Newsletter

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up
IE_logo_newsletters

Select your favourite newsletters and get the best of Irish Examiner delivered to your inbox