Mount Brenton Golf Club pro Jan Best during an ALS fundraising golf marathon at the club in June.  (Photo by Don Bodger)

Mount Brenton Golf Club pro Jan Best during an ALS fundraising golf marathon at the club in June. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Tiger’s impact on the game can’t be denied

Love him or not, there’s a dynamic that brings excitement and energy to the game of golf

As head pro at Mount Brenton, I find myself discussing golf and listening to a wide range of opinions.

Tiger Woods’ recent win has again shown his intangible gift to fascinate us and stir up a passion that lies dormant when the greatest golfer of all time is away from the game. He is the best of all time for reasons that will only continue to increase following his success this year.

More importantly, I cannot overstate the direct correlation between Tiger’s presence and the increased productivity in our local pro shops and golf courses. If you are a fan of economic productivity, and place importance on the future of our game, then it would behoove you to join the masses and celebrate his prodigious legacy.

The viewership rating for Atlanta’s tour championship was up nearly 250 per cent – not a coincidence, I assure you. Following the event, unfamiliar people came to our store, with a new-found interest of the game having recently heard about Tiger’s comeback.

They bought merchandise and even considered joining our club. Say what you will but that is powerful!

The fact that one man can have that kind of direct impact on our business is astonishing. He acts as a solo marketing campaign for our entire sport. Nobody else has even come close to making such everlasting impressions and reigniting the prosperity of our industry.

For those of you who share a more pessimistic outlook based on Tiger’s skills as a husband, can we at least agree that a great comeback story is hard to resist? What is there to dislike? I have a sneaking suspicion that even those people who claim to dislike Tiger still watched the drama unfold last weekend.

Let’s face it. Many of the great historically important athletes have been controversial figures, including Muhammad Ali, Diego Maradona, Floyd Mayweather and the list goes on. We appreciate the talents they are inherently gifted with. We watch because we are pro human and love being immersed in the theatre we call sports, not to mention the juicy subplot that lurks beneath.

Tiger isn’t responsible for the obsessive amount of media coverage placed on him, he is a victim of overindulgence by journalists who simply can’t get enough. Let us put aside his private-life shenanigans. After all, do we really know two sides of the story? I promise you we do not.

Can we agree to enjoy his new found swagger and hope to see what further records can be broken by the greatest of all time?

(Jan Best is the head pro at the Mount Brenton Golf Club).