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Golf Australia Express : Issue 53
SAY WHAT? LETTER OF THE WEEK YOUR THOUGHTS... WHATA SAD STATE of mind we have fallen into when those we most admire are based around prizemoney won rather than raw achievement and a quality of character we would wish our son or daughter to emulate. Walter Lindrum was unbeaten in billiards for 17 years and his skills caused the rules of the game to be changed—now that's iconic. Heather McKay was unbeaten in women's squash around the world for almost 20 years—now that's iconic. Rod Laver is the only tennis player to ever win two tennis grand slams and was the last player to do so in 1969. He also holds the record for most number of single titles won in men's tennis at 200—now that's iconic. Donald Bradman’s batting average of 99.94 exceeds the next best player by almost 40 runs—now that's iconic. So I can think of four stunning Australian sportsmen and women whose achievements are truly iconic. Tiger Woods didn't win a sausage for a couple of years, isn't even the leading majors winner in golf, doesn't have a grand slam to his name and does not cry out for us to have our children identify with him as a role model. I think you have confused the cult of personality with the term iconic. — TONY SWAIN, VIA EMAIL THE LETTER OF THE WEEK WINNER RECEIVES A DOZEN DIXON GOLF EARTH BALLS VALUED AT $49.95 —Neil Kamminga, via email TELL US YOUR THOUGHTS ON LYDIA KO... SAD TO SEE SOMEONE suggest Lydia's story is not the biggest of the year and compares her to Adam Scott, who once again has not met the expectations of the media and spectators. Lydia has already demonstrated that she has the wherewithal and tenacity to take her game far into the future, however Adam, (whilst being a great golfer and one of my favourite local players) struggles to complete the big games.— KEITH SYKES, VIA EMAIL ON TIGER AS AN ICON.. REGARDLESS OF HIS HUMAN betrayals he has never betrayed the sport. His talent is unsurpassed and his dedication to the sport and help towards others is second to none. Tiger respects his peers and given his stature in the game, he is only human, and people expect too much from him in both his private life and his sport. He deserves credit and respect. He doesn’t need the money and it’s not about that for him—it’s about the win. — GREG MCINTOSH, VIA EMAIL ONE DEFINITION OF AN icon is: "person or thing regarded as a symbol of a belief, nation, community, or cultural movement ". Therefore looking at the "whole" of Tiger Woods' life, he fails the test. —GEOFF MILLER, VIA EMAIL TIGER WOODS MIGHT BE one of the most successful (and richest) golfers of all time, but I struggle to accept him as an "icon". An icon is a representative symbol of something. Woods has all the hallmarks of a spoiled brat when things are not going his way, barely tolerates—let alone engages with—his surprisingly large number of fans, treats interviewers mostly with disdain and only smiles when he wins. If we declare him an icon of the sport, aren't we saying only success and money count, no matter how they are achieved? — BIRGIT YANDLE, VIA EMAIL IT'S EASY FOR US TO think of Tiger as the greatest sporting personality ever, but as golfers we're biased. He has earned more than others but does he really transcend his sport? In my opinion that's the measure of a global sporting personality. This category includes Roger Federer and Michael Jordan, but for my mind—and not as a fan of the sport—I believe Michael Schumacher was able to transcend the boundaries of his sport, capturing the imaginations of millions, not just motorsport fans. —ANDREW HINCHLIFFE, VIA EMAIL
Issue 54—Ryder Cup