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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 September 2006, 17:02 GMT 18:02 UK
Punishment for apologetic Bjorn
Thomas Bjorn eyes up a putt at the BMW International Open
Bjorn was a vice-captain to Bernhard Langer at the last Ryder Cup
Thomas Bjorn has been fined a "substantial sum" by the European Tour after his stinging attack on European Ryder Cup captain Ian Woosnam.

Woosnam chose Lee Westwood ahead of Bjorn for his final wildcard pick.

The Dane had earlier issued an apology for his comments and given his backing to the European team.

"Having had a day to reflect on my comments I would like to apologise for the hurtful and personal nature of my remarks to Ian Woosnam," he said.

"I realise I have made a mistake and, as such, have unreservedly apologised to Ian for my comments, which were made in the heat of the moment."

In Lee and Darren I believe he has picked two great players

Thomas Bjorn
Bjorn was a member of the European winning sides in 1997 and 2002, partnering Woosnam in his first Ryder Cup match at Valderrama, and an assistant to Bernhard Langer last time.

"I am a passionate guy who believes the Ryder Cup is one of the world's greatest sporting events and I was desperately disappointed not to make it into the team," he added.

Woosnam decided on Darren Clarke as one of his wildcard picks 10 days before finalising his team.

But the Welshman revealed he had made the decision on his second pick only just before the official announcement, and was unable to speak to either Westwood or Bjorn beforehand.

RYDER CUP BLOG
Don Noble
BBC Sport website user

Bjorn was higher in the world rankings and the Ryder Cup points table than Westwood, and initially said he had "totally lost respect" for Woosnam, branding his captaincy "pathetic".

"I realise that it is 100% the captain's choice and in Lee and Darren I believe he has picked two great players," Bjorn added in his apology.

"All I want now is for all the media, players and golf fans to get behind the team for the matches in Ireland and for my comments to be forgotten."

After fining Bjorn, the European Tour issued a statement from its executive director George O'Grady.

He said: "The European Tour will not tolerate comments such as the personal and unacceptable remarks made by Thomas on Ian Woosnam.

"We are aware that he has apologised to Ian Woosnam, and he has also apologised to the Tour. This unfortunate incident is now closed."



EUROPEAN RYDER CUP TEAM

 

US RYDER CUP TEAM

 

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