Former world No 1 Greg Norman has said he feels sorry for Tiger Woods’ position as a fallen idol but believes the American’s travails showed even the greatest individuals would have their “weaknesses” exposed.
In a wide-ranging interview, Norman also said golf needed to do more in the anti-doping fight and expressed doubt that the game’s re-introduction at next year’s Rio Olympics might do much for the sport.
Norman, who swapped the world No 1 ranking with Woods several times in the late 1990s, suggested the 14-times major champion went “off the rails” after the death of his father Earl in 2006, and had lacked a firm hand to guide him.
“You do need somebody to slap you across the face, and realign you,” said the 60-year-old Australian.
“You don’t need your minders to say ‘It’s OK, do whatever you want to do, we will cover up for you’.
“Unfortunately it shows you no matter how great an individual you become, our weaknesses get exposed.”
Following revelations of extra-marital affairs in 2009, Woods has suffered a string of injuries and is currently competing at the US Masters ranked 111th in the world, his lowest ranking in over 20 years.