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Tiger will have to earn his way onto Ryder Cup team says Captain Tom Watson - Page 4

post #55 of 133
I think Watson and hos assistants should have a one on one with Tiger when he feels healthy. The US has gotten spanked the last couple times by teams who were tight. The europeans overall are superior players to the US. If Tiger says he's healthy and enthusiastic about beating Europes ass, then he's in. No brainer. If Watson and co. Come away feeling less than enthusiastic, then I don't take him.

Tiger is a golf enthusiast. He would be perfect over there. But he's gotta be healthy!
post #56 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by WillyE View Post

I think Watson and hos assistants should have a one on one with Tiger when he feels healthy. The US has gotten spanked the last couple times by teams who were tight. The europeans overall are superior players to the US. If Tiger says he's healthy and enthusiastic about beating Europes ass, then he's in. No brainer. If Watson and co. Come away feeling less than enthusiastic, then I don't take him.

Tiger is a golf enthusiast. He would be perfect over there. But he's gotta be healthy!

 

Top 50 in world: 24 U.S players, 17 European

 

I dunno if they're that superior - it's pretty close.

post #57 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by WillyE View Post

I think Watson and hos assistants should have a one on one with Tiger when he feels healthy. The US has gotten spanked the last couple times by teams who were tight. The europeans overall are superior players to the US. If Tiger says he's healthy and enthusiastic about beating Europes ass, then he's in. No brainer. If Watson and co. Come away feeling less than enthusiastic, then I don't take him.

Tiger is a golf enthusiast. He would be perfect over there. But he's gotta be healthy!

Well, I don't know. Speaking as a European I'd be happy to see Tiger in the USA team even if he's healthier than ever. His Ryder Cup record is much poorer than one might expect, I think I'm right in saying that he has lost more matches than any American in the history of the event - and he hasn't played as many matches as some. It's a competition that doesn't seem to suit him.

post #58 of 133
Good point.
post #59 of 133

A lot will depend on who makes the team and who doesn't. This is why I'm really hating the parity this year because it's hurting our Ryder Cup team. I do not want Chris Kirk, Brendon Todd and Patrick Reed making the team over Phil Mickelson, Zach Johnson or Jason Dufner. And I think that will impact whether Tiger gets chosen, because if Phil, Zach and Jason are 10, 11 and 12 on the points standings, Tiger's stock isn't as high.

post #60 of 133

http://www.cbssports.com/golf/eye-on-golf/24581392/tom-watson-says-tiger-woods-and-the-ryder-cup

 

Quote:

"I've said it before that he's an automatic pick," said Watson. "You can't have a player of that caliber not on the team. But that has to be weighed next to what his health is.

"I hope he can get back in the swing, because he wasn't playing his best even before the surgery. But if he's not physically right, Tiger will be the first one to tell me."

There's an even better exchange about Watson and Woods having a sit-down that ends with Watson saying he and Tiger "don't know each other very well." It's as awesome as it sounds.

Watson had previously backed off auto-picking Woods when he was asked what he would do if Tiger only played one more tournament this season.

"One more tournament? I'm not going to answer that. Tiger I hope just basically gets well and starts playing well again. If he gets well and is playing well, I'll pick him. But one more tournament, I don't know. I can't answer that."

Technically Woods could play in one tournament and be completely healthy but I understand Watson's unwillingness to deal in hypotheticals.

post #61 of 133

US starting to give an archetypal lesson in how not to build a team

 

All this focus on Tiger and the soap opera it involves is destablising at the time when Watson needs to be talking up and working with some of the lesser lights and not reducing the US team to a fortnightly medical bulletin about a player who has a 38% record

 

You'd be better off trying to build a team round Speith and Bubba with the likes of Kurcher, Dufner, Zach, and Keegan in support

 

A bit of me wonders whether Tom might actually be better served by drawing a line under this sooner rather than later. If he reckons that Tiger is becoming a distraction against a likelihood of not playing anyway, then bring that decision forward and spare the rest of the team the anguish, and allow them to settle to the task that now awaits them and get focused. 

 

Be brave, bite the bullet etc One day America will have to line up without Woods, in much the same way as all teams eventually have to line up without their historic totems. This might actually be a good time to do it

post #62 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by FarawayFairways View Post
 

All this focus on Tiger

 

I'll stop you right there. I haven't sensed much of a focus on Tiger at all. The media asks a question, it's answered, and they blow it out of proportion, but that's not Tom Watson doing so, or other team members, or assistant captains. You likely have as much insight as any of us into what Tom is actually doing - next to none. Do you agree?

post #63 of 133

I believe you're committing a self-refuting statement. Look at what you wrote yourself

 

"The media asks a question, it's answered, and they blow it out of proportion"

 

Can you not see that by asking the question in the first place, and then "blowing it out of proportion" (the answer presumably) it becomes the focus, like it or not? I'd be very confident that anyone associated with the American team would be happy never to have to answer a question on Tiger Woods's fitness in the build up to this, but they can't avoid it - unless........

 

For such time as this great unanswered variable exists therefore, it becomes the focus by definition, unless they're able to divert the attention with alternative subject matter

 

I think your hope that this doesn't become a distraction for other players, assistants, or the captain himself, is wishful thinking. Few sports teams are able to withstand a media barrage over any length of time that continually makes a line of question their obsession without it becoming disruptive eventually, that applies to the captain who tires of hearing it, or the players on the fringe who have no idea if the number (whatever he ends up as) ranked player on the list is going to suddenly usurp them. We've had a similar issue whereby Europeans were told to qualify or risk being dropped. Some came back to Europe to qualify, others showed less commitment, continued to chase money, and got dropped. The result is that we ended up with a stronger team bond and our results didn't suffer. I can't really recall any single player ever being a media focus in Europe, but can recall those who became the focus of the team (successfully in nearly every instance)

 

As regards what Tom's thinking, that's pure guesswork and trying to read nuance whilst looking for clues in previous decisions that he's been involved with. So far as we can establish though, Tom doesn't seem to have that much of an idea either, given that he's moved from describing him as a certainty for selection, to more recent qualified positions. I'm struggling to believe that any of this can help the development of the team ethos. The problem you have of course is that you have to indulge the media, so refusing to answer Tiger Woods questions isn't an option

post #64 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by FarawayFairways View Post

I believe you're committing a self-refuting statement.

I disagree.

The media is not Tom Watson or the players. Who cares with the media does? They aren't choosing the captains or hitting the shots.
post #65 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by FarawayFairways View Post
 

I believe you're committing a self-refuting statement. Look at what you wrote yourself

 

"The media asks a question, it's answered, and they blow it out of proportion"

 

Can you not see that by asking the question in the first place, and then "blowing it out of proportion" (the answer presumably) it becomes the focus, like it or not? I'd be very confident that anyone associated with the American team would be happy never to have to answer a question on Tiger Woods's fitness in the build up to this, but they can't avoid it - unless........

 

For such time as this great unanswered variable exists therefore, it becomes the focus by definition, unless they're able to divert the attention with alternative subject matter

 

I think your hope that this doesn't become a distraction for other players, assistants, or the captain himself, is wishful thinking. Few sports teams are able to withstand a media barrage over any length of time that continually makes a line of question their obsession without it becoming disruptive eventually, that applies to the captain who tires of hearing it, or the players on the fringe who have no idea if the number (whatever he ends up as) ranked player on the list is going to suddenly usurp them. We've had a similar issue whereby Europeans were told to qualify or risk being dropped. Some came back to Europe to qualify, others showed less commitment, continued to chase money, and got dropped. The result is that we ended up with a stronger team bond and our results didn't suffer. I can't really recall any single player ever being a media focus in Europe, but can recall those who became the focus of the team (successfully in nearly every instance)

 

As regards what Tom's thinking, that's pure guesswork and trying to read nuance whilst looking for clues in previous decisions that he's been involved with. So far as we can establish though, Tom doesn't seem to have that much of an idea either, given that he's moved from describing him as a certainty for selection, to more recent qualified positions. I'm struggling to believe that any of this can help the development of the team ethos. The problem you have of course is that you have to indulge the media, so refusing to answer Tiger Woods questions isn't an option

 

The media blows things out of proportion. That's what they do. Following your logic, I should be highly concerned about Kim and Kanye because the media explores it from every angle possible. If I heard one more thing about LeBron's cramps, I would think he was dealing with PMS. The way I see it, there are real issues, and contrived issues. As far as the captain and other team members having to answer questions, that's all part of being in the limelight.

post #66 of 133

Like Janet Jackson sang, "What have you done for me lately?" If Tiger isn't healthy and/or swinging well, let him watch it on TV while recovering from his injury, which will hopefully be quick. IOW, if your F1 car crashed and had some body panels ripped off, you can't expect to put it back on the track to legitimately compete against the other drivers in perfect cars. 

15 years ago? Sure, Tiger was so good that he could compete against the others even if he was injured.

But now? Nah. 

post #67 of 133
Thread Starter 

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/watson-no-playoffs-could-mean-no-ryder-cup-tiger/

Quote:
 

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W. Va. – United States Ryder Cup captain Tom Watsonsounded a familiar refrain Wednesday when asked yet again about the possibility of Tiger Woods being one of his three captain’s picks later this summer.

“As I've said,” he reiterated, “if he's playing well and he's healthy, he's on the team.”

Of course, that’s a big if. Not just the part about being healthy coming off recent microdiscectomy surgery, but also the part about playing well.

Because, quite frankly, Woods might not be playing at all leading into the Ryder Cup.

 

Read between the lines and you can see how “playing well” would have to include actually playing competitively.

Watson certainly sees it that way.

“He'll be considered less of a pick then if he didn't have a track record going into the Ryder Cup, of course,” the captain explained. “He'd be the first to tell you, ‘I haven't been playing.’ Like I said, how he's been playing and if he's healthy, those are the two factors that I'll weigh in choosing. That's just common sense in my opinion.”

post #68 of 133

In Wood's case, I don't think Watson has much of a choice. Sponsors and TV ratings have a lot to do with the Wood's selection process. No so much with Mickelson's selection, but  a little. Now if Woods is not in competitive playing shape, he should voluntarily take himself out of the mix to save a lot of current, and  future bad press should he play poorly and/or the U.S. loses again.  

post #69 of 133

I agree that it's just lip service, to make other players happy, in the end if Tiger is swinging a club he's on the team, he certainly does not need to "earn" his way on, he's already done that many times over, he needs to show he's healthy, that's it.

post #70 of 133

Well if America is seriously picking teams based on sponsors and TV ratings, then frankly they're getting the kind of results they deserve. Looking forward to their opening pairing of Jay Leno and Oprah.

 

Europe won't pick Stephen Gallacher because he's Scottish and we're concerned about how attendances might fare otherwise. We'll sell the tickets regardless because of the spectacle and not because of the inclusion or otherwise of a single individual. A little over a year ago we took 40,000 fans overseas to Australia to watch a series of three rugby matches. The 'British Lions' is a unified team made up of the four rugby union boards of the UK and Ireland. 

 

Leaving that imperfect comparison aside, I'd be reasonably confident that interest will reflect success eventually. If I were a sponsor, I'd be a lot keener that team America associates my product with success rather than yet another failure. Any pressure I could bring on Watson (which I doubt I'd be able to incidentally) would be directed very much along the lines of pick the tweleve who you think are most likely to win

 

As regards Tiger Woods? Bring him on. Europe ain't scared of America's 30+ percenters. We really aren't. Tiger, Phil, and Jim have all been beaten far too many times now to intimidate us in this format. Any aura they might have is seemingly in the imagination of American commentators. It evapourated on the first day at the K Club and has never been regained. When a player of Francesco Molinari's standing celebrates with a cheer when drawn to play Tiger in singles, you know something has slipped (or Molinari is perhaps mad!)

 

I'll tell you now, we're a lot more nervous about some of these longer hitting younger players who come here with no baggage and nothing like the losing culture. Build a team round Bubba, Jordan, and Fowler, and if necessary sneak the old guard in with supporting roles playing 2 or 3 matches, and I reckon you've got something to go to war with. What happened in 2008 when America last fielded an inexperienced hungry line-up who rode a wave (six rookies)? How many successful teams has Woods been a part of? Woods could win the next three or four cups single handedly and still leave America in deficit (as could Mickelson and Jim lets not forget - Woods isn't alone in this generational short coming)

 

It'll be interesting to see the identity of the "four or five players" who've agreed to accompany Watson to Gleneagles next week from the "20 or so" who were asked. "Most of them can't make it, they're playing the Scottish Open or the John Deere Classic", Tom explained as reported in today's paper. Just so you know, Gleneagles to Aberdeen is about 2 hours by road, and the hotel has a heliport. At this time of year in the lower Highlands, you get about 18 hours of daylight. I wonder how many of those playing Aberdeen would have been able to find a few hours in return for a lucrative sponsored gig?

post #71 of 133
Does anyone else sense that Watson kind I wants tiger to just excuse him self.. He brings it up every time by saying oh tiger knows if he is playing well, and thusbinstednof acting like the team captin who makes te tough decision he leaves it up to the superstar who calls the shots.. You basically have the same chemistry in other sports between coaches and superstars, the only difference the coach usually tries to make it look like he is taking he decision when the reality is the opposite.. Tom here doesn't really care to his anything because he is faces with possibly the GOAT and he doesn't want to get on his ***t list basically!

I want to see Tiger just for the spectical of him either winning or loosing badly.. Both will be very fun to see and I can imagine the give and take on this forum between the tiger haters, the tiger lovers, and the tiger apologists.. Of which I am none :)
post #72 of 133

In amongst the Tiger Woods flying circus there are some strange things coming out of the European camp which hardly suggests all is well and unified either.

 

In truth it started within a week of Medina and rumbled on for about 6 weeks thereafter when the inability to name a captain was compounded by the media managing elicit opinions from key named players. In some cases this was harmless kite flying, in others it was pretty well an endorsement that bordered on lobbying.

 

The result is that it became obvious that about half of them had reservations about McGinlay's qualifications and suitability and wanted Darren Clarke instead. The media threw Sandy Lyle's name into the ring, as indeed Colin Montgomerie was mentioned, but this was always likely to be an Irish affair.

 

I should say that of all the European nations paired, the Irish have by far and a way the worst record when required to work together. So when Des Smyth was added as an Assistant, and speculation mounted last month that Padraig Harrington would be making it three from the Republic, a few warning lights started to flash in my mind.

 

On Friday (perhaps feeling the effects of the hospitality of the hotel on the Thursday evening!) Europe's other Assistant, (Sam Torrance) stated that Lee Westwood, and Graham McDowell should be picked now, along with Ian Poulter if he fails to qualify automatically. This is a complete contradiction of what McGinlay has said though. McGinlay has always insisted that he'll select form players (the usual European way) and that players will earn their place etc Now I don't know how a captain and his assistant can be so fundamentally divorced from each other on such a fundamental thing as the basis for wildcard selections, but this doesn't argur well in my mind. It looks like a slightly dysfunctional team is taking shape.

 

Significant key players wanted Darren Clarke. Others (including Clarke) have criticised the choice of venue and course, and now we've got an assistant captain telling the captain who to pick at a media day, and contradicting him in the process

 

Mind you, in the same report it would also appear that Tom Watson doesn't have Tiger's telephone number, or if he does, Tiger doesn't take his calls!

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