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Golf: “A gentlemen’s sport”

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Stan Sutherland
Stan Sutherland

Tennis star Caroline Wozniacki believes golf, especially the pro game, lends itself to a more laid-back approach to competition. Although as Emily Kay suggests, “a high-strung Rory Sabbatini, among others, might disagree.”

Emily’s comment comes from her article headed, “Rory McIlroy helps tennis-playing girlfriend with mental game” and it’s an interesting insight to the mental game required by top competitors in the two sports.

Wozniacki believes, “It's (Pro golf) a completely different atmosphere. Over there when you're at a golf tournament, it's more relaxed and a gentlemen's sport, I think. People help out each other when they play with each other because they play against the course. It's up to them. They don't have really an opponent that they have to fight."

Reflecting on her efforts to grow her golfing game Caroline says, "You figure out that it's not so easy as it looks on TV. It's not just hitting a ball, standing still. It's a lot of mental…I think it's more mental than tennis actually. You do one wrong movement and the ball goes in the trees or somewhere and it's difficult. So definitely it has surprised me how mentally strong you need to be."

“It's not so easy as it looks on TV”, ain’t that the truth as we long-suffering hackers well know.

Karen Crouse also mentions the mental game in her article, “Analyst Who Is Able to Back Up Opinions” – A look at the thoughts of “Brandel Chamblee, who is known for immersing himself in details, begged to differ. Wielding his tongue like an X-Acto knife, Chamblee used statistics to shred Faldo’s angle.”

Sir Nick Faldo has predicted a “fabulous run” in the majors for a fellow Englishman, Luke Donald, but Brandel begs to differ.

Chamblee’s critical style comes out when he says, “I’ve racked my brain for plausible reasons for Tiger dismantling the golf swing that made him so much better than everybody else it was laughable. All I’ve come up with is sheer boredom or arrogance.”
Brandel maybe big on golf stats but I’m not convinced he’s all that great when it comes to understanding human nature. It’s the nature of the (golfing) beast to always try to get better and if they’re really committed they’ll work on changes, which call into question their present state of mind.

In New Zealand we have a classic case in “Cambo”. Michael Campbell, the US Open Champion who decided to make, less-publicised changes, which ultimately resulted in, I seem to recall it was Jim Furyk recently saying that he did not recognise Cambo’s swing and ball flight. 

Here’s the link to Emily and Karen

Quote of the Day
"Once I'm out there alone and have to start playing, it goes right and left and up and down. I get so frustrated…Feel like I just want to break the clubs and go home."

Caroline Wozniacki sounding like a seasoned hacker who still has some work to do on the mental strength required for this maddening game of golf, which thankfully, most times is played in a gentlemanly and lady-like fashion.

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