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Teed Off (Sep 21, 2014)

Update: September, 21/2014 - 20:14

with Robert Bicknell

The golf world gets crazy

While cutting some brush at his home in Florida, Greg Norman almost rendered himself a one-armed golfer after a losing argument with a running chainsaw. Fortunately, the Shark escaped any horrifying injury to his arteries, nerves or tendons, so with some rehab he might be playing golf again someday. It's not easy to take out a Great White Shark… fortunately, but it does reinforce the basic concept of being very careful when you handle any power tools. If a world class professional athlete with better than average eye-hand coordination and excellent reflexes can get hurt, you can too.

What this will do in regards to The Bluff's scheduled Grand Opening in mid-October is anyone's guess, but even if held, it's a pretty sure bet Norman will not be hitting any balls.

Last week, Rory McIlroy accidentally ignited a firestorm by hinting that both Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson were quickly approaching over the hill status.

McIlroy said, "They're just getting older. Phil's 43 or whatever he is, and Tiger's nearly 40. So they're getting into the sort of last few holes of their career. And that's what happens. You get injured. Phil has to deal with an arthritic condition as well. So it obviously just gets harder as you get older. I'll be able to tell you in 20 years how it feels.''

Naturally, the social media universe almost went into meltdown, which required Rory to do a little scrambling, but not really apologizing. In fact, he questioned if he had actually said anything wrong and claimed he has said much worse to Tiger's face.

Being a friend, and a fellow Nike spokesman and a top Tour player obviously allows McIlroy some degree of immunity, and Tiger kept a sense of humor about it, remarking that "Phil has fewer holes left than I do".

McIlroy, after much ado on social media and elsewhere about his original comments, was forced into damage control without actually apologizing, which I don't think he should have done.

The problem isn't the comment Rory made, because it's factually correct. Tiger and Phil are getting a little long in the tooth and there will be a day in the not too distant future where they will not be a force to contend with, nor automatic favourites in any event. They're getting old and despite the favourite slogan of the game, "Golf is a game for a lifetime", it isn't.

At least, not at that level.

Sure, they can continue to play recreational golf with their friends, or grandchildren, but they will not be firing 63's off the back tees in a major event.

If you play golf once or twice a week, like any dedicated weekend golfer, you can pretty much expect to leave the course in the same physical shape as when you teed off four hours earlier. Albeit, a little more tired and a little drunk, but you will not have subjected your body to the same physical strain as a tour professional who does this to him/herself five days per week.

See, aren't you lucky?

For the most part, Tour pros are almost always hurt in one place or another. Either simple muscle aches from overuse to hyper-extended tendons. Sore feet to twisted knees to back pain, repetitive impact injuries to the wrists, arms and shoulders as well.

Granted, it's less than what a professional football or rugby player would experience.

So, what Rory was saying is factually true, but unfortunately, we seem to live in a "PC" (Politically Correct) world - especially in the US, where you're not suppose to say anything that could possibly offend someone else, even in the slightest (which is another reason I have no interest in going back. I not only call a spade a spade, I also tell you where you can stick it. PC I am not and never will be).

Yes, people got on Rory's case because he dared to say the truth. It didn't matter that Tiger laughed at it, or Phil might have grinned. It offended someone somewhere and they couldn't wait to hit social media.

My opinion, the biggest problem today is that Twats and Twits Tweet…but rarely think. — VNS

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