Sam Torrance has criticised Nick Faldo for labelling Sergio Garcia “useless” on the eve of September’s Ryder Cup.
Faldo caused controversy by questioning Garcia’s attitude during the 2008 contest when he led Europe to their only Ryder Cup defeat since 1999.
The Spaniard insisted he was happy to “forgive and forget” in the wake of Europe’s 16.5-11.5 victory at Gleneagles but Torrance, who served as one of Paul McGinley’s vice captains, was not so willing to forget the slur.
“To say that right in the middle of the Ryder Cup, what was the a***hole thinking about?”, he told the latest issue of Bunkered magazine.
“The reaction in the team room was magnificent. The guys rallied round Garcia like he was an injured, well, goose!
“Really, it was pathetic from Faldo. I’ve no idea where he was coming from with that stuff. You can even quote me on that, I don’t care. He’s an a***hole. It was beyond belief that one of our greatest-ever players would come out with a comment like that.
“Garcia’s not a team player? Have a look in the mirror, pal. Garcia’s one of the best team players we have. He’s an incredible kid, with the heart of a lion and he’s incredible in the team room.
“Really, I’ve just no idea where those comments came from.”
Torrance captained the Europeans to victory at the Belfry in 2002 and, while he criticised Faldo, he was full of praise for McGinley, who was crowned Coach of the Year at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards on Sunday.
“I think Paul McGinley is the best captain there has ever been, there’s no question about that in my mind,” he added. “He was absolutely extraordinary.”