World Golf events should be held at different golf courses around the world

If only the World Golf Championships were just that, events involving players from all around the world and played around the world.

ianpoulter1There are now four tournaments that comprise the WGC events each year and of the 34 that have been held since 1999, only 7 have been held outside of the United States.

Had for example, this past weekend’s World Matchplay Championship won by Ian Poulter, been held elsewhere, say England, Japan or Spain, several things would have been different.

The tournament would have been less affected by Tiger’s apology
While the timing of Tiger’s apology was not ideal, the tournament would have been less affected had it been staged outside of the US.

Granted there was still some good coverage of the event in the press but most of the focus was elsewhere and the lack of respect for 66 of the top 68 players in the world was generally abysmal.

More people would have watched the event live
After the rains on Saturday, Camilo Villegas and Paul Casey battled it out with some of the finest golf seen in the tournament’s history.

David Feherty described Camilo Villegas’s bunker shot on the 22nd hole as the best he has ever seen. Reports indicate fewer than 1500 were even in the vicinity.

Can you really imagine a crowd of this size if it were held near London or Tokyo? Some of the Saturday weather is considered a fine day in London! Maybe explaining the charge of the English at this event.

Another reason for the small galleries was the lack of Americans making it through to the weekend. I have had enough of the “Players in the Top 64 in the world you’ve never heard of” articles each time the event lands in Arizona.

Move it around. I wanna read more “Players in the Top 64 who have never travelled overseas before” stories.

TV coverage would have been better
I know there’s a lot of cacti in Arizona but I think a few were cardboard cut-out’s designed to look like golf fans. It made for some pretty boring coverage. Any non-golf fan wouldn’t give the coverage more than a few seconds. It looked like the Dubbo Club Championship.

Ok. All a bit harsh. But this is one of my favourite golf events of the year and it is heartbreaking to see it appear second rate. I’m not suggesting we move any of them out of the USA for good. It is home to the best golf tour on the planet after all. I’m merely suggesting each WGC event be held internationally every two years for example.

It has been reported that Accenture have the power to move the matchplay event to wherever they choose after 2011. Accenture sponsor the event but how is it they have a say in where it moves? I thought the International Federation of PGA Tours were in charge of all this?

With the timing of Tiger Wood’s apology last week, it is odds on to be moved. But to where?

As usual, money is the big talker. Not the PGA Tour and not the International Federation of PGA Tours.

It makes me yearn even more for Greg Norman’s old world golf tour proposal.

6 thoughts on “World Golf events should be held at different golf courses around the world

  • February 23, 2010 at 03:18
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    While I agree in principle, Michael, I think in this case it was a good thing that the WGC was held in America. Ian had not won in America, and winning his first PGA event elsewhere might have resulted in him getting one of those bizarre little “asterisks” everybody talks about. He can say he won a big PGA tournament on American soil now, and I think his career needed that to get some well-deserved street cred.

    Otherwise, I agree with you. They are World Golf Championships, after all.

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  • February 23, 2010 at 05:01
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    Finchem went on record a few years back stating that the US wa the best place for these events to generate more money. As usual in this god forsaken world, we all know what really makes the world go round. The almighty, Dollar, Pound, Ruble and Euro.

    Finchem is probably eating crow now. Take a fumbling US (and world) economy adn couple that with the HSBC championship being a huge success in all places China, last year.

    I’d love to see at least two of them rotate annually, if not all four.

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  • February 23, 2010 at 08:11
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    Mike, solid comment as always. I sometimes wonder whether we make too much of winning on American soil. It does have the best players I suppose but a look at the Top 50 now and winning in Europe surely can’t be that much easier can it?

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  • February 23, 2010 at 08:12
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    And Jay, yes keep the majority in the US and rotate a few. A perfect solution.

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  • February 23, 2010 at 15:53
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    I noted in my Monday summary that this may have been the first WGC event with more internationals than Americans. The makeup of the Top 50 is definitely changing.

    Let’s face it, for a long time pro golfers were actually looked down on in the rest of the world, so you had the occasional great Australian or Englishman or whatever but you wouldn’t expect a lot of great players outside America. That’s not true anymore, so where you win shouldn’t matter anymore either.

    But I’m not sure it’s going to change anytime soon. There is so much resistance to change among the institutions of golf, justified in the name of tradition, that American wins are likely to carry more weight for a while yet.

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  • February 23, 2010 at 22:48
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    I think it’s a good point, you have to keep it fresh and keep it accessible to all. Money shouldn’t always be the driver, if you pardon the pun! #DamianConnop_tag

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