The two best male and female golfers won golf tournaments last weekend. One has been permanently burned in our consciousness; the other is perhaps the most overlooked superstar in the modern era of golf.
In just his third tournament after re-constructive knee surgery last year, Tiger Woods once again proved that the unimaginable is routine for him. Trailing the overnight leader, Sean O’Hair, by five strokes entering the last round, Tiger’s dramatic comeback was completed by a thrilling 16-foot putt on the 18th hole at The Arnold Palmer Invitational.
For the second consecutive year, Tiger sunk a putt on the final hole of Arnie’s event to win by one shot. It was his sixth victory at the tournament.
What should be a major concern for all other Tour players is that he did not, by his standards, hit the ball well for four days. His short game, however, was one moment of genius after the other. It was very apparent that while Tiger was not hitting full shots during his rehab, he was working on his short game—a lot. There is a lesson to be learned in that for all of us.
The “other” best player that won on Sunday at the LPGA International, in Phoenix, Ariz. is not the household name that Mr. Woods is, but here are some statistics for you to consider:
- The first player in LPGA Tour history to make $ 1 million in a single season.\
- Two-time, LPGA Player of the Year
- Qualified for the LPGA Tour AND World Golf halls of fame in 2000
- Has won a record seven LPGA Tournaments when coming from behind in the last round
- Has won seven Major Championships
- The winner of 48 tournaments worldwide
- The winner of 35 LPGA Tour events (which ranks 12th on the all time list in LPGA Tour history)
- Has the best swing in golf (male or female)
You have probably guessed by now, but all these remarkable accomplishments belong to Karrie Webb. Webb has never been a “media darling” in large part because she is shy and unassuming, and she has lived in the very long shadows of Annika Sorenstam for most of that time.
Those shadows have perhaps been comfortable for Webb because it was Sorenstam who has been the “face” of the LPGA Tour for the last decade. Webb has not had to deal with all the demands of being that player, which may have been just fine with her. Karrie Webb much prefers to let her clubs do the talking.