NORTON, Mass. – It was an interesting 24 hours for Sean Foley earlier this week.
On Sunday evening he was celebrating Hunter Mahan’s victory at The Barclays, the long-time Foley student’s first triumph on the PGA Tour since the 2012 Shell Houston Open. Before lunch on Monday, however, it was revealed that Foley and Tiger Woods had parted ways.
For Mahan, who has defended Foley’s teaching methods throughout a tumultuous time for Woods and the swing coach, his victory at Ridgewood Country Club was perfect timing.
“Maybe it’s poetic justice that it happened that way,” Mahan said on Thursday at the Deutsche Bank Championship. “(Justin Rose, who also works with Foley) and I both want to play well for Sean because of the criticism he gets for working with Tiger.”
Mahan said that he and Foley have had some fun with the high-profile split the last few days, “I cracked on him, ‘You’ve got plenty of free time now,’” the FedEx Cup points leader laughed. Nor are there any hard feelings between Foley and the former world No. 1, Mahan said.
“It was a great partnership and they have a lot of respect for each other,” he said.
But that hasn’t made the criticism Foley has endured lately any easier for Mahan.
“You get angry when guys are talking about stuff and they don’t have all the information,” he said. “It’s good to play well for him when he’s getting smeared.”