President's Cup: Picking Tiger Woods Is a Joke

Espen UldalContributor IIIAugust 26, 2011

No golfer is better than his last round. Except for Tiger Woods. His game is in the cellar, but he is already the only player sure of a spot on the American President’s Cup team, even though it is impossible he could ever play his way into the US dozen for the match. Not even some players in the top 10 on the qualification list, can be sure they will play against the International Team in Australia Nov. 14-20. But now Tiger is. As the only one for now.

Captain Fred Couples has chosen to give one of his two wild cards to Woods, saying Woods is the best player ever, and it makes no sense waiting until Sept. 26 to pick the former world No. 1.

Most of the sane golf world would say it makes no sense to pick him at all.

I would call it the worst decision by an American captain in team golf since Hal Sutton chose to pair Woods and Phil Mickelson in the Ryder Cup.

By picking Woods, the message is: "It does not matter how good you play, it does not matter if you win tournaments or even majors, it’s better to lose with Tiger on the team than win without him." Tiger—good or stinking—has to be a part of how the world should regard American golf.

Tell it to either Mark Wilson or Keegan Bradley, because picking Tiger means that one of these players, who have both won twice this season—and one of them even won a major in stellar fashion— won’t make it to Australia because of the "Tiger Pick".

As the old Toyota add said, “You want him, You got him!”

So what is the self-sufficient and self-centered Woods ready to do to justify this pick? A few days ago he wrote on his own website that he does not plan to play before the Australian Open, one week before the President’s Cup. Couples said, "That’s not enough" … And then he picked Woods for the team. A deal has probably been a quid pro quo between the two.

One can only assume that Tiger, in return, will drag himself around the corner from his home and play in the Children's Miracle Network Hospital Classic at Lake Buena Vista?

A deal has obviously been made, and first of all, Tiger won’t lose face now.

Golf will, though.