David Duval has sensationally sacked the man responsible for carrying his bag during 11 tournament victories in the last two years. Mitch Knox, nicknamed 'Fort' earned close to $800,000 with Duval during that period.
A report in the US magazine Golfweek says the partnership has come to a close a few days after the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. Duval phoned Knox to say that his services were no longer required.
“It was time to move on, time for a change,” Duval said at the Nissan Open. “We weren’t communicating and working together as well the last couple of months. I didn’t enjoy being out there as much as I should’ve.”
Duval's new caddie is Jeff Weber, his caddie of four years until August 1997. But there will be another caddie on his bag for this week's World Matchplay Championship, employing veteran caddie Greg Rita with a plan of hiring Rita full time. Rita has pedigree as a top caddie; other players such as Curtis Strange, John Cook, John Daly and Scott Hoch have employed him.
But Duval thinks Knox will get another top bag soon because of his quality. “He is very good at what he does” said Duval "And I would recommend him to other Tour players".
Knox was philosophical about his termination from Duval:
“I’ve been David’s friend a lot longer than I’ve been his caddie,” said Knox. “Everybody wants to see a friend do well. So if he feels he needs a change to have a better chance of winning, I support him. Everybody expects me to be upset, but I’m not. Whenever you do this, you never know. It’s been a great experience for me. That’s what you dream of when you come out here.”