Woods fined for spitting, apologizes

Tiger Woods throws his putter to caddie Steve Williams during the final round of the Dubai Desert Classic.

Tiger Woods throws his putter to caddie Steve Williams during the final round of the Dubai Desert Classic.

VIRGINIA WATER, England – Tiger Woods apologized after he was fined an undisclosed sum by the European Tour on Monday for spitting on the green during the final round of the Dubai Desert Classic.

The tour said in a statement that tournament director Mike Stewart reviewed the matter and “feels there has been a breach of the tour code of conduct.”

“The Euro Tour is right – it was inconsiderate to spit like that and I know better,” Woods said on Twitter. “Just wasn’t thinking and want to say I’m sorry.”

The tour would not give the amount of the fine but it is probably between $400 and $16,000 for a minor breach.

Woods spit on the 12th hole after missing a par putt on his way to a 3-over 75. He began the final day one shot off the lead but never recovered after making two bogeys in his first three holes.

The 14-time major winner, now ranked No. 3, tied for 20th place at 4-under 284. Woods has gone 17 tournaments without a victory for the first time since turning professional in 1996.

Almost a year ago, following a sex scandal that ended his marriage and rocked the golf world, Woods promised to “make my behavior more respectful of the game.”

The tour’s code of conduct states that when a player becomes a member he “voluntarily submits himself to standards of behavior and ethical conduct beyond those required of ordinary golfers and members of the public.”

Television cameras spotted Woods spitting in an earlier round in the Dubai tournament. Ewen Murray, a commentator for Britain’s Sky Sports, said on air after seeing Woods spit on the second tee during the second round that it was “one of the ugliest things you will ever see on a golf course.”

On Sunday, after Woods spit on the 12th green, Murray said that “somebody now has to come behind him and maybe putt over his spit. It does not get much lower than that.”

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