I’ve had quite a few conversations with people about the state of golf right now and the lack of someone who actually cares about winning tournaments.
As soon as I read that Tiger had jetted into Augusta, I knew that the Matsers would, quite simply, be all about him.
The reason is, none of the leading players (who are they?), care about winning golf tournaments anymore. Why should they? They are endorsed to the hilt, will never have to worry about their gas or food bills ever again, so what does it matter if they miss the cut (eh, Mr McIlroy!).
To give you some idea as to how poor a state golf is in right now, here we have a player, currently ranked 944th in the world, who banked £6m last year, without having to play a tournament. How did he do that?
Well, he was voted the PGA Tour’s Impact Player of the year.
Surely, that indicates he played? Nope. What it indicates is, not a single bloke out there right now makes an impact!
Not a single player in the current top 10 in the world has won a tournament this year? So what do you have to do, to be in the top 10? Obviously winning isn’t important?
Don’t get me wrong, they are obviously good players but is “good”, good enough? I guess that depends on how much you earn these days for just being “good”?
In 2013, Rory McIlroy went over to Abu Dhabi. He visited the Fairmont Bab Al Bahr hotel and signed a 10 year contract with Nike worth $250m.
That was worth £156m sterling back then so, if someone pops that in your bank and you have to do nothing for the next 10 years other than keep your nose clean, how important is winning anything, ever again? Sure, he’ll win the odd one or two on the tour because that will keep his sponsors happy and next year he’ll be looking for another 10 year deal.
At the time he got that deal, he was the World No.1. He was the youngest multiple majors winner since Seve Ballasteros and he really went for gold in 2014, winning the Open at Royal Liverpool, and the PGA Championship….how many majors since?
After he won the PGA Jack Nicklaus said, “Rory is an unbelievable talent. I think Rory has an opportunity to win 15 or 20 majors or whatever he wants to do if he wants to keep playing. I love his swing”.
Jack Nicklaus would have aimed to win 15 or 20 more, that’s for sure!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not just picking on Rory. The rest are just as bad and that simply has to be because they have everything in life they need and, they don’t have an ounce of the desire to win, that Tiger has always had.
It’s why people will travel from around the world to see him play at Augusta, but wouldn’t do the same to watch Rahm, Thomas, Scheffler, Johnson, Koepka and the rest….or McIlroy, who is just 20/1 to win and sixth favourite?
Those that like to bet on golf must be finding it impossible to find the winner of a tournament right now. Last weekend the Valero was won by a guy priced up @ 175/1….and Betfred didn’t even bother quoting him!
The two guys that followed him home on -11 were 80/1 and 125/1. Hossler (who?), went off 140/1, Merritt 125/1, Howell 110/1 and the shortest priced player to finish with a double figure under par finish was Hadwin, who was a 40/1 shot.
Good luck to anyone considering predicting the results of these things….hopefully being a Masters winner (and a need for a new jacket), inspires those that “can”, to “do”. If that’s the case then I’m with Morikawa, Hovland and Cantlay.
I’ve a feeling though it’ll be a new face, who will cease to be a “player” afterwards, and simply become a “brand”.