Monthly Archives: March 2014

Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews Wants Vote To Allow Female Members

Royal & AncientGentlemen Only Ladies Forbidden.

That’s one of the acronyms that’s been attached to golf in times when the issue of men and women have come into play over the past.

First is was Augusta National, which received plenty of attention for not allowing women members. Then they admitted Condoleezza Rice as the first female member ever.

Now, the R&A (Royal & Ancient), the governing body of golf in Europe has asked for a potential vote in September to allow female members.

St. Andrews, where the R&A is based, is considered the home of golf and has a very historic significant within the game. This vote could be huge in terms of growing the games for women over in Europe and as well as elsewhere around the world. The current members of the R&A are being asked to support the proposition set forward by it.

While it seems rather crazy that in this day and age people are still not admitted based on gender, the fact of the matter is that golf clubs around the world still have a strict policy. Even in the United States, there are golf clubs that do not permit women on the grounds of the club. Augusta received a lot of attention because the golf course is home to the Masters. But there arem any where PGA Tour events are not held that invoke the same policy of male membership only.

If golf wants to continue to move forward, decisions like the one made the R&A are very important. You would think that governing bodies want to make the game as accessible as possible to all. Of course, there are other issues affecting golf that is hindering its growth. Such issues include the length of a round and how much it costs to play the game.

Golf remains a very expensive sport to play, which automatically limits those that will have the capability to play.

And let’s not forget that the game is extremely difficult to play as it is. Adding things like this would tend to decrease those numbers.

The R&A has certainly made the right decision to move this to a vote and try to open up the membership base. This could be the start of something great, and come July at the British Open there should be plenty of support for it.

Tiger Woods Missing Arnold Palmer Is A Good Sign For His Appearance At The Masters

Tiger WoodsThe news that Tiger Woods withdrew from the 2014 Arnold Palmer Invitational shouldn’t be particularly concerning for fans of the No.1 ranked golfer in the world.

Woods has won the Arnold Palmer Invitational eight times in his career, and with a ninth would break the all-time record for most wins at a single event by any player in history. Woods loves playing at Bay Hill, probably almost as much as he loves playing at Augusta.

That love for playing in the Masters could be the underlying theme here. With the 2014 Masters less than a month away, Woods and his team probably knew that the only way his back has a chance of being 100 percent for the first Major Championship of the year was to take an extended break and focus on resting.

Woods probably needed some tough convincing to withdraw this week on the advice of his doctors and surrounding cast. If anything, Woods has been stubborn and hard-headed in the past when it comes to injuries. He has routinely played at less than 100 percent and has probably missed more time because of it.

The fact that Woods is 48 and his window of consistently contending for Majors is dwindling likely played a factor here. Woods is not a fast healer like he might have been 10 years ago. The fact is that his body is quite a bit different. While Woods remains in fantastic shape, he is approaching 40 and the body reacts to events differently.

While we might not get a chance to see Woods in action at Bay Hill this week, we all would much rather see him 100 percent at the Masters the second week in April.

Woods remains at 14 Major Championship victories, with the last coming in 2008 at the U.S. Open. If Woods does not win the Masters, it will be a full six years since that U.S. Open victory that Woods will have last won a Major Championship. That seems almost impossible considering how he has been in contention over these last six years, only to fail to produce.

The way that the slate of Majors sets up in 2014 though is very appealing for him. Woods has Major wins on three of the four courses, with the only one he hasn’t won on being Pinehurst for the U.S. Open. In 2005, the last time that U.S. Open was held at Pinehurst, Woods finished second to Michael Campbell.

At the very least, Woods has to be confident that he has had plenty of success on the Major Championship venues for this season.

How Will Tiger’s Back Affect Him Heading Into The Masters?

Tiger WoodsIt’s clear that the last two tournaments Tiger Woods has entered he has not been 100 percent healthy. In fact, one resulted in a withdrawal during the final round, and the other resulted in a final round 78. Actually, had it not been for Woods’ withdrawing at the Honda Classic, he might have withdrawn at the Cadillac Championship for the second-straight week in the final round. But instead he gritted it out to finish the tournament.

Woods will get a week off in between the Cadillac Championship and the Arnold Palmer Invitational, not playing at Innisbrook in Palm Harbor or the Valspar Championship this week. Continue reading