"There is always a philosophy for lack of courage."—Albert Camus

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Tiger Woods: Wimp?

It’s official: Tiger Woods won’t be playing at the Nissan Open next week in L.A. (Where he was born and raised, by the way.) If you are at all familiar with golf you no doubt know that Mr. Woods has won seven PGA golf tournaments in a row. That is the second best string of consecutive victories in the history of golf, four behind the 11 in a row won by Byron Nelson in 1945.

Tiger is all about history and records and being the best ever. He hasn’t stated the reason he isn’t playing, but maybe the fact that over his career Riviera (the course where the Nissan Open is played every year) has eaten his lunch has something to do with it.

In 11 appearances he has never won there, and if you’ve seen him play in the event he looks positively mortal. Compare this with the second least effective tournament he has played in without winning, the Barclays Classic, with four winless appearances, and you can see just how humbling this tournament is for arguably the greatest golfer of all time.

The Nissan open is the one tournament, the one thing in golf Tiger has not conquered, and this week he has admitted to the world that he can’t. The record is more important to Tiger than facing down this Goliath in his golf life. Fair enough. But seeing something in golf humble the greatest kind of makes a struggling single digit handicapper like me feel good.

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