Archive for the ‘Golf’ Category

Tiger Woods, who has long sought to attain golfing greatness, gained a satisfying measure of sports symmetry on Sunday by winning the Memorial thus achieving one of his most important golfing goals.

Appropriately it happened at the tournament hosted by the legendary golfer known as the Golden Bear – Jack Nicklaus, who Tiger has been stalking since childhood. With the win, the 73rd of his career, Tiger is now tied with Nicklaus for second place on the all-time PGA victory list.

Tiger’s play during the final round was so remarkable that even Nicklaus was amazed.

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It was refreshing to watch someone else win The Masters this year. To be honest I never paid much attention to Bubba Watson before Sunday.

I didn’t know that Bubba, a Georgia Bulldog, who often practiced at Augusta, never had formal golf lessons, and no swing coach either. (I am so tired of hearing about swing coaches.) This was a completely self-taught golfer winning the sport’s most hallowed tournament.

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With Tiger Woods’ five shot victory at the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill on Sunday, most of the golf world breathed an enormous sigh of relief, but certainly no more than Tiger himself, a man who has struggled mightily to regain his form and his confidence, ever since he crashed into that tree and lost his marriage and the respect of many.

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Count me among those not very excited about Tiger Woods finally winning a golf tournament.

Okay it is news, good news, and Tiger was pumping his fist at the end, with a winning birdie put – like the Tiger of old. I’ll give him that. But if we are really set to usher in the next great Tiger Woods era, then we have to see him do it again. Maybe I’m being a little harsh, and not celebrating the “struggle” he has obviously overcome – oh well.

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Years ago there were two great sports “Babes”. The most prominent was George Herman “Babe” Ruth, arguably the greatest baseball player of all time. Not a day goes by without someone somewhere, mentioning his name or extolling his legend.

But the other “Babe” these days is too often overlooked. Her name was Mildred “Babe” Didrikson-Zaharias, who without debate is the greatest female athlete the world has ever known. Do I know that for sure? No, because I’m too young to definitively make the claim, but I do believe it. I’ve seen the film clips, and I’ve read the stories, and based on this “research” I’m sold on her place in history – she is indeed number one. Still, because she competed so long ago, coupled with the fact that we seldom, if ever, give female athletes their just due, this Babe is not mentioned nearly enough.

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Sunday at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Maryland, Rory McIlroy proved convincingly that you don’t always have to suffer for long after dealing with a huge disappointment. Sometimes all one has to do is dig in and work harder. Which is just what he did, fashioning perhaps the most dominating performance ever witnessed at the U.S. Open. He won by eight strokes, finishing a record 16 under par.

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I know it was Tiger Woods’ first tournament of the season. So I’ll try not to get too carried away. But Tiger ‘s performance at the Farmer’s Insurance Open appeared worse than ordinary. After a decent start on Thursday and Friday, Tiger played poorly over the weekend and finished 15 shots out of first place – a terrible showing. Lots of golfers look this bad at any given tournament, but rarely is that golfer named Tiger Woods.

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This year challenged many of our beliefs about sports issues and the athletes who play the games. The highlights and the lowlights of 2010 offered us important insights into what athletes face, and what fans expect and are willing to accept. How the games are played and what we think about sports going forward will most certainly be shaped by what happened in 2010.

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Mickelson Masterful In Augusta

Posted: 11th April 2010 by DavidBurnett in Golf, Masters, Tiger, Tiger Woods
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Finally Phil Mickelson lived up to the hype. He played the tournament of his life this weekend at the Masters. On this day he was in fact easily golf’s best.

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Tiger Woods to Return at Master’s

Posted: 16th March 2010 by DavidBurnett in Golf, Grand Slam, Masters, Tiger, Tiger Woods
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Despite the continued public ridicule, the sponsors who’ve abandoned him, and the devastating damage to his image, Tiger Woods’ announcement Tuesday that he will return to competitive golf at the Master’s in a couple of weeks is welcome news.

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Tiger’s Truth and Consequences

Posted: 2nd December 2009 by DavidBurnett in Golf, Tiger, Tiger Woods
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As malicious as the tabloids can often be, there is sometimes a grain of truth in those stories. Sometimes there’s a huge grain of truth. And today Tiger Woods came as close to admitting to the affairs alleged by the tabloids as he ever will. He said in a statement released on his website that […]

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Tiger Takes the Blame

Posted: 29th November 2009 by DavidBurnett in Golf
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Tiger Woods says he alone is to blame for the Friday morning accident outside of his home. Tiger’s comments came Sunday afternoon via a statement released on his website. http://web.tigerwoods.com/news/article/200911297726222/news/ While he took the blame, he didn’t provide details. No mention of another woman, and nothing in his statement about an argument with his wife. […]

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Silence Not Always Golden

Posted: 29th November 2009 by DavidBurnett in Golf, Tiger, Tiger Woods
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Let me start by saying that I am thrilled that Tiger Woods is healthy and was not seriously hurt in that accident outside of his home the other night. I selfishly want to see him continue to lay waste to his peers, because I am a huge Tiger Woods fan. But that said, there are […]

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Tiger’s Close Call: Our’s Too

Posted: 28th November 2009 by DavidBurnett in Golf, Tiger, Tiger Woods
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I just got a startling reminder about how much our sports heroes can mean to us. For a few painful minutes on Friday I didn’t know whether the world’s greatest golfer would live or die. I know I was not alone in my worry and concern. Based on the amount of Twitter traffic alone, thousands, […]

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Tiger At His Best: Why We Watch

Posted: 12th September 2009 by DavidBurnett in Golf, Tiger Woods
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When Tiger Woods is great he is capable of setting records that may never be broken. When he’s average he still finds a way to win. And occasionally he exposes some real flaws in his game, but he is most times still competitive even if he doesn’t win. Which brings us to the third round […]

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