Let me first make it clear that I am not a golfer.  I did play for a very brief time in my 30s and 40s but I only really enjoyed the 19th hole afterwards when I found solace in a couple of cold draft beers.

I had a terrible swing which caused lower back pain and most of all what I did not have was the patience needed to “enjoy” the game.  On a trip to Myrtle Beach years ago I threw a club or two into the water and announced my retirement which nobody noticed.

However I enjoy watching golf on TV which rose to a new level when Tiger Woods burst onto the scene.  Before that I would always watch the major events and when I was very young rooted for Arnold Palmer and against Jack Nicklaus although I will admit to shedding a tear or two when in 1986 at age 46 Nicklaus won his sixth Masters and became the oldest player to do so.

Things though changed for me when Woods in 1997 won his first Masters at age 21 by an incredible 12-shot margin.  No longer did I just focus on the big events and if Tiger was in contention on a Sunday I made sure my schedule allowed me to be home to watch the final round, even on a nice beach day in the summer.

I was captivated by his skill and fierce competitive drive that seemed to make others wilt in his presence.  Contenders on a Saturday became pretenders on a Sunday as Tiger dominated the sport like never before and would surely break every record imaginable.

We know what happened along the way and the personal demons and shortcomings that sidetracked his career along with back problems that required numerous surgeries and procedures.  However Tiger’s will to win never stopped and his greatest victory came 22 months ago when he claimed his fifth “Green Jacket” in storybook fashion at Augusta.

Tiger Woods will likely never play in a PGA event again although you would make a mistake in counting him out if indeed he does want to try. Following a horrific one-vehicle accident earlier this week that could have cost him his life the 45-year old faces a very long rehab to just walk never mind play 18 holes.

We knew the day was coming when he would leave the game to others and there are many good ones out there.  But one thing is for sure and that is nobody will get me off the beach on a Sunday to watch golf.

That is until his son Charlie turns pro.

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