IT’S FAR from ideal to have to comment on matters that have taken place away from the golf course, but it would be remiss of me not to voice my disappointment at the comments made by Steve Williams towards his former employer Tiger Woods.
I don’t wish to inflame an already delicate situation, but while I’m saddened by what Williams said at a caddie awards dinner in Shanghai last week, I’m equally upset at the lack of action taken by Adam Scott, who has opted to retain his services.
On a far more positive note I was delighted to see Martin Kaymer return to winning ways at the WGC Champions tournament. In a year of tremendous individual performances the German’s final round was right up there with anything I’ve seen this season.
I felt more than a measure of sympathy for Freddie Jacobson, who really did very little wrong on the final day, and you can only really hold your hands up and say ‘fair play’ when someone reels off nine birdies in the last 12 holes of such a high-profile event.
It would be harsh to describe Kaymer’s year as sub-standard but it’s fair to say he’s struggled to cope with the extra trappings and media focus that comes as part of being ranked No1 in the world.
He admitted as much last week and I wasn’t entirely surprised. Rory McIlroy seems to have taken the extra attention in his stride, but the spotlight isn’t for everyone and it’s easy to forget that at just 26, Kaymer is still relatively young in golfing terms.
It was a remarkable achievement to have headed the rankings, however briefly, at that age and I’m sure he’ll have learned a lot over the past 12 months and certainly done a lot of growing up.
To me it seemed like he reverted back to his natural game in Shanghai which is encouraging – it’s the way he should be playing. After the Ryder Cup he was looking to draw the ball in order to add an extra dimension to his game and I think that threw him out of kilter.
Winning in Shanghai couldn’t be compared to lifting a Major but it was the next best thing and I’m sure it will trigger a return to more consistent performances.
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