Bob Torrance reckons Padraig Harrington is on a road to nowhere and won’t win again until he turns back.
The veteran Scot, 79, insists that the Dubliner is “crazy” to make changes in his swing as he prepares to turn 40 at the end of this month.
“Disappointed” that Harrington has decided to “take a break” in their 15-year partnership, Torrance said: “He has been going down one road that I think is the wrong one and he is determined to go down that road.
“I said to him, if you go down too far, you won’t come back.
“You cannot make changes at 40 in golf. You can make them when you are in your 20’s, but once you get to 40, it is too late.
“We discussed it and I said, ‘I don’t know what road you are taking, do you think it is the right road?’ He said yes, so I said, ‘Go ahead then.’”
Torrance rebuilt Harrington’s swing from the ground up, helping him win three majors and another 19 titles worldwide.
And he’s amazed that the Irish ace is adamant about making changes in his swing that have only led to a slide from third to 64th in the world.
Believing the will talk again in three weeks, Torrance said: “I think it’s crazy. He is as high as he can go in golf. He won two Opens in a row and then he won the USPGA. He has won tournaments all over the world.
“I don’t mind a man going for perfection, you always strive for perfection, once you stop trying for perfection you are better to put the clubs away.”
Describing Harrington as “like a son to me”, Torrance added: “I have nothing to say against Pádraig. I have had 15 of the happiest years of my life teaching him
“He just said he needed a break for three weeks, to see if I can clear my mind up. Will we meet again? Hopefully - some sunny day.
“I’m not hurt. Hurt is not the right word, no. Disappointed but not hurt. I have been 15 years with him, that’s a long time.”
While some describe Harrington as “eccentric”, Torrance said: “Padraig is not a strange man, he has just got his own ideas. Nothing will shift him. Once he gets onto that, that’s that.
“His game is in bad shape because of his mind, not because of his golf. I’ve said that and he agrees. That’s why he wants away.
“He still says he works on exactly what I told him, except this one move he makes with his right elbow. He knows it’s wrong but he is determined to do it.”
The Dubliner said on Friday that he needed to make changes but ruled out sacking members of his back-room team.
But after sleeping on his sixth missed cut of the season, he spoke with Torrance on Saturday morning and they decided to separate for the time being.
Harrington said: “We are frustrated. There is no doubt about it. We always had a good argument. But at the moment there is less arguing, there is just more frustration and tension rather than getting it out there.
“I think it comes down to the fact that I want to spend more time working on my mental game and my short game that necessarily beating balls, which I would have done earlier on in my career.
“I would have hit a lot more balls and done less short game, whereas I want to do more mental stuff and short game now.”
Harrington is now believed to be contemplating making further changes and it remains to been seen if caddie and brother-in-law Ronan Flood or mental coach Dr Bob Rotella will be next to go.
Asked if he’d take Harrington back like the prodigal son, Torrance joked: “Probably, aye. But I’ll be skint by then.”
Harrington admitted that it was painful to break up but he left the door open for a reunion while he explores other avenues.
He said: “Bob has been unbelievably important in my career and he has completely shaped it.
“But at the moment I am frustrated and I don’t know if I want him standing looking at me and when he is not standing looking at me I am not happy either.”
Torrance admitted that the pair have been at loggerheads for several years and described their relationship as being a father-son affair.
He said: “He’s like a son to me. We changed everything in his swing from the top of the swing to the start of the swing, through the ball. We spent nine hours on the practice ground ever day he was over in the rain, the snow, the hail.
“He says to me one day, you won’t see many golfers practising out here today. And I said, ‘You won’t see many coaches out here either.’”
Asked if Harrington could still win in any given week, Torrance said: “Not at this point. Definitely not.”