July 20, 2009

Hats off to Tom Watson

If you're a sports fan at all, then you heard about 59-year old Tom Watson's second-place finish in the British Open. Watson was tops on the leaderboard all weekend but lost in a playoff. Since then, the reaction to this story has been largely "How disappointing was it that Tom Watson lost?" and "How lame is golf if a 59-year can compete in a major?"

No, this wasn't disappointing, and this certainly doesn't take a hit to the credibility of golf.

Golf is a wonderful game. I've never picked up clubs and tried it myself, but the mere fact that people play it from a young age until the day that they die is a testament to how great it is.

There are certainly better athletes in the NFL, MLB and NBA, but what's average career of an NFL running back? Five years? That's it and then they may have some serious medical problems to deal with.

At least in the PGA, our favorite golfers age gracefully.

Along with that, how many of these athletes can do what PGA golfers can do? Sure Tiger makes everyone look like a bunch of clowns, but that's because he's a once-in-a-lifetime golfer. Everybody on tour can do great things on the golf course, that's how they go there. It takes a skill that not too many people have.

And the fact that Watson finished second is more of a testament to how well Watson performed as opposed to how "weak" the supposed competition of the rest of the British Open was. If you think you could do better, go to your local golf course and see if you can go head-to-head with the course pro there. See what happens.

This was just a fantastic story, Watson carried himself wonderfully and I'm glad that it happened. I'm glad that sometimes the human spirit can fight off father time and just for a brief moment of time - we can stick out tongue out at our own mortality.

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