Friday, November 14, 2008

Golf as an Olympic sport? Daly abroad

This past week the International Golf Federation made a formal proposal to the International Olympic Committee to reinstitute golf into the Olympic Games in 2016. Why?

Correct me if I’m wrong. We already have the Ryder Cup and the Presidents Cup. Throw in the annual World Cup and I think we have our bases covered. According to the IGF the game is played in approximately 120 countries. The game is expanded to the limit. Grow the game? I don’t foresee anyone in Rwanda dreaming of Olympic gold via the golf route. I do, however, see that same person in Rwanda dreaming of solid gold via the golf route.

Golf is now truly a global game, but is it an Olympic event? Think of it. How many Olympic events are called “games?” I play golf...okay not well, but do I consider myself to be participating in an athletic endeavor? Are you kidding? It’s purely recreational and that’s where it belongs. Golf is a recreational activity and not to be placed in the same category as a decathlon. Alright, I’ll give you synchronized swimming. By the same token, if you screw up there, you could drown. That isn’t going to happen in golf...Woody Austin aside.

It’s not like golf hasn’t been part of the Olympics before. In 1904 there were 77 competitors and only 73 of them were Americans. The rest were Canadians. One of them, George Lyon took the gold medal and earned a spot in the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.

Let’s face it; the Olympic golf is played every week. The best players from every country square off on professional tours around the world. Golf as an Olympic event would just be another tournament. The last thing we need is just another tournament.


Next week in Hong Kong, John Daly is making his season debut on the European Tour. As a former British Open champion he’s an automatic member. Seeing as how he’s pretty much worn out his welcome over here, Europe may be a viable option.

For the most part, it’s pretty difficult to get kicked out of Hooters and even more so when they’re supposed to be your sponsor. Yet, JD did just that and got locked up for the night. To date Hooters hasn’t ended his contract, but you can imagine they’d like him to go away. What better place to go than Europe?

Daly has proved that he can’t compete in the U.S. As big a draw as he still is on the PGA Tour, he’s proving to be more and more of a liability.

Maybe and it is a big maybe, he’ll find his game over there. However, that’s going to take a lot of hard work and dedication. Unfortunately, those are two things he’s seemed to have avoided over the last five years. It might do the big guy well to stencil two words on his golf bag and to look at them often. Those words are LAST CHANCE, because that’s what it is. I have a terrible feeling that the next words we read about Daly are going to deal with a tragedy.

Bartender, on that happy note please pour me a tall, cold glass of Diet Coke. That’s the other fluid JD is addicted to.

See you on the first tee,


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