Annika Sorenstam has spoken out after she received an onslaught of negativity on social media for accepting the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Donald Trump, just a day after his supporters stormed the US Capitol building.
The 10-time major champion and LPGA legend accepted the award alongside Gary Player - whose own son tweeted that he hoped his father would decline the award - and thousands of golf fans slammed the pair for standing next to Trump so soon after the attack on the Capitol.
"I have always viewed it [the medal] in the context of the people through history who have received it," she told Golf Channel. "It started in 1963 and it's quite the impressive list of people; whether that's through science, art, entertainment or sport. It's really about people that make this world a better place.
"I'm not one to second-guess. It [the ceremony] was supposed to be in March 2020. Looking back at it, it's really about the people who have received it through history. I don't want to spend energy looking back. I want to spend energy looking forward, continuing to open doors and create opportunities for young girls around the world."
Following the events that took place in Washington, golf's governing bodies took a stand, stripping Trump National of hosting tournaments, including next year's US PGA Championship which was scheduled to be held at Trump National in Bedminster.
The R&A then followed suit by saying that Trump Turnberry in Scotland would not be considered for The Open any time soon.
"I share the sadness and the fear with everyone," Sorenstam added. "What happened at the Capitol was a dark day in America's history.
"Again, looking back, I don't second-guess. I like to look forward and not spend energy on what could have been. It's all about opening doors. I've heard from a lot of people. As you can imagine, a lot of opinions, a lot of comments and I hear clearly what those people say.
"I know they see it differently, but I listen and embrace them all. It's really important to listen."
(Main Image Credit: Keith Allison)