What We Learned From Tiger Woods This Weekend
After the ire had cooled and the green jacket been awarded, we were able to sit back and determine what the Tiger Woods follies represented and what they taught us.
1. Scorecard signing rule is anacronistic. No other sport has such an element effect such a powerful impact on the result. Think about it for a moment. The world watches as you make a number, but your marker gets it wrong or you get it wrong and out you go. Imagine that scenario in any other sport.
2. Nearest point definer is anything but a definition. What if Tiger had been 6 or 12 inches closer with his drop? While it’s true that Tiger unwittingly admitted to the transgression (mixing two elements of rule 26-the drop rule), folks were tweeting about a bad drop long before his post-round press conference…and they were out for blood!
3. Phone-In rule penalizes those who get lots of televised face-time, like Tiger. Either hire enough rules officials or let golfers truly police themselves and others in their group. This is tied for my pre-eminent disaster in golf, equal to the banning of anchored putters. It’s the no-other-sport tick again. Fans at the arena and fans in their living rooms are not part of the officiating team; why should they be granted such a privilege in golf?
4. Rules interpretations, even on same day/same tournament/same committee, are inconsistent. Flexibility of Guan ruling versus flexibility of Woods ruling. Really, it should be the inflexibility of the Guan ruling. The kid was playing with an aged champ (Crenshaw) in the process of shooting 84 and a young pro (Manassero) in the process of missing the cut by one. And the kid is at fault? Not once was their position relative to the groups ahead and behind mentioned. How did this young man catch no break while El Tigre gets every accomodation in the world to avoid DQ?
5. Flagsticks should be softer (made of pudding.) Something more gentle. Can’t imagine another sport where something that wretched can happen as the result of a clang, not even a goal post in football or hockey.
6. Pros don’t shoot at flagsticks for a reason. this is a fact. They aim left or right. Dudley Hart let me in on this one. They are so accurate that the flag stick is a distinct possibility on any shot.
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