Tiger Woods has slammed Steve Williams, his caddie, for comments made about his rival, Phil Mickelson.

Williams has caddied for Woods since 1999 and the pair have become close friends – the world’s No.1 even acting as best man at the New Zealander’s wedding.  

Gallery: Rivals Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson in pictures

But on Saturday, Williams was reported as saying he hated Mickelson, which infuriated his boss. 

The 14-time Major winner revealed on Monday: “I was disappointed to read the comments about Phil, a player I respect. The matter has been discussed and dealt with.”

World No.3 Mickelson said: “After seeing Steve Williams’ comments, all I could think of was how lucky I am to have a class act like Bones (Jim Mackay) on my bag and representing me.”

Meanwhile, Williams refused to back down, stating: “Mickelson pays me no respect at all and hence I don’t pay him any respect. It’s no secret we don’t get along either.”

Woods and Mickelson have never been close friends, but the pair have always maintained their respect for one another.

Mickelson even commented recently how the game has missed Woods since the US Open.

The war of words involving Williams looks certain to create an atmosphere when Woods returns from injury next year.

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