By Andrew Both
CARY, N.C. (Reuters) – Tony Finau was the victim of a prank when Tiger Woods called to reveal his captain’s picks for next month’s Presidents Cup in Australia, but he has adopted a forgive if not forget attitude about the conversation.
The 30-year-old said he “never” even suspected that United States captain Woods was joking when he said he had some “sad news”, which Finau presumed meant that he had not received one of the four wild card selections.
Woods, it turns out, is quite the jokester.
“I knew I was in the running with a handful of guys but you just never know what he’s thinking,” Finau, who narrowly failed to make the team automatically, said in a telephone interview with Reuters.
“When he made that indication that it was going to be a tough phone call with some sad news I was kind of saddened.
“I guess I just don’t know him well enough that he’s a bit of a jokester.”
Finau said that Woods had left him hanging for about 15 seconds, a long 15 seconds at that, before finally telling him that he was on the team.
Woods could sense Finau’s disappointment.
“I could feel his heart sink when I said I had some tough news. So, I let him sweat it out for a few seconds before welcoming him to the Presidents Cup,” Woods wrote in a blog on the Presidents Cup website.
The long-hitting, affable Finau, who is of Polynesian descent, will make his Presidents Cup debut against the International Team at Royal Melbourne from Dec. 12-15, having already equipped himself well at last year’s Ryder Cup.
Finau said he will not hold any hard feelings against Woods for his prank.
“I was happy that phone call ended a good way and not a sad way,” Finau said.
“It was the total package of a prank. It was definitely a story I’ll tell for the rest of my life of how Tiger pulled my leg on how I thought I missed the team.”
(Reporting by Andrew Both; Editing by Christian Radnedge)