July 18, 2009
Golf God's Go Nuts at Turnberry
I am not a betting man, and if I do, my min/max
is only two dollars. At the start of the Open, I like
most fans or bloggers put the bet on the Tiger because
we look like genius's when he wins, and with a winning
percentage in majors near 30%, we will be right a
third of the time.
But a strange thing happened this week. The earth's
axis shifted and Tiger is not here for the weekend.
His wayward driver betrayed him (again) as he only hit
58% of his fairways, lost a ball in the gorse midway
through Fridays round, and off in his G4 or whatever
he flys back to Florida, no doubt analysing his woes with
Hank on the way home.
The Golf God's then stepped in to keep things interesting
for fans and ABC. Tom Watson pulled up with his time
machine to lead at the end of 36 holes, and even more
unlikely leads by one at the end of 54. Not at the end
of 54 years old, because Watson of course is 59 years old
just two months shy of 60. Standing atop the leaderboard
one shot ahead of the field. This is a man who has won
the Open FIVE times, so he knows how to win (8 majors in
his career), and is still VERY competitive on the Champion's
Tour, where has a senior Open Championship on his resume.
In stark contrast to Tiger's wildness, Watson has simply been
steady and sure, playing his driver down the middle, running
woods and irons into the greens and rolling the putter with
confidence and precision. The ol' craftsman one might say,
but this is the guy who beat Nicklaus here in 1977. Ancient
history to many. So, he is more than a craftsman, he is a
Last year, Greg Norman showed his brilliance for three days
only to falter in the final at age 53. But Norman was not
battle tested, and it showed. Watson is. So, don't be surprised
if this ol' guy doesn't put on his blinders, play to his strengths and
place himself in the history books as the greatest feat by a golfer
of any age. I got two bucks says he gets it done.