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Who can defend Sergio?


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Originally Posted by RayG

A couple of remarks about "focus" above brings other sports into mind as well. MANY baseball players have said they never hear the crowd when it counts. A guy is throwing a projectile at you at nearly 100 mph, you're not sure if it's going to be at your head or straight down the middle or outside. You have that .25 of a second to decide: where it is, when it will get there and if you should swing. If you thought about that guy in the stands calling your wife a lesbian or something, you better have a backup career. Playing a round of 'no-holds barred' golf with your buddies will cure you of that excuse of "that dog barked in my backswing... from that house across the lake". Our usual group of guys will generally keep talking to each other without deliberately trying to distract each other as they take a shot. We MIGHT keep quiet at times, others not so much. BUT- if we are one short and get hooked with a single, we keep our chatter to ourselves and clam up during their swings. If he catches on to our style, fine- if not, that's fine, too.

There was a great article on ESPN about this. Were baseball players talk about the sounds they like, dislike, being in the zone. A lot of them say its like the kevin kosner movie were he pitched a perfect game, were the crowd just fades away.

As for Sergio and the noise that is his problem, i get that, but still Tiger has to realize the presence he creates on the course. Just the fact he lied about the Marshall telling him Sergio was done hitting, shows that he knew he did something wrong and didn't want to admit to it. He doesn't like to show weakness of any form. Usually he's clean cut on the golf course, usually he doesn't answer questions were it would be damning to him. But this time he did, he lied, and it shows he knows he messed up. He didn't call Sergio's BS, he deflected. When you deflect, there's an underlying base of knowing you did something wrong. All he had to do was say, "I can't control what the crowd does", or "I didn't know the crowd would react that way to me choosing a club to hit. Next time i will be more aware." That would have been acceptable, and logically sound to basically mean Sergio needs to get a thicker skin, but he didn't do that. He deflected. I'm not saying Sergio is right, he has a clear problem with pressure, the crowd, Tiger's presence overall. But, Tiger also knows that in the game of golf, its a gentlemen's game. Jack Nicholas calmed a crowd for Tom Watson, Tiger woods deflected a remarks by lying about it.

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Can pretty much expect any time Sergio has to go head to head against Tiger, Sergio will whine and choke, he did both this weekend.  I don't dislike Sergio, but he's hard to root for when he is in thi

How much of all the rationalizing is nonsense? Sergio is too emotional. Maggert was too old, McIlroy too young, Dufner choked, Stenson couldn't close the deal etc., etc. A lot of sports comment

Originally Posted by saevel25

There was a great article on ESPN about this. Were baseball players talk about the sounds they like, dislike, being in the zone. A lot of them say its like the kevin kosner movie were he pitched a perfect game, were the crowd just fades away.

As for Sergio and the noise that is his problem, i get that, but still Tiger has to realize the presence he creates on the course. Just the fact he lied about the Marshall telling him Sergio was done hitting, shows that he knew he did something wrong and didn't want to admit to it. He doesn't like to show weakness of any form. Usually he's clean cut on the golf course, usually he doesn't answer questions were it would be damning to him. But this time he did, he lied, and it shows he knows he messed up. He didn't call Sergio's BS, he deflected. When you deflect, there's an underlying base of knowing you did something wrong. All he had to do was say, "I can't control what the crowd does", or "I didn't know the crowd would react that way to me choosing a club to hit. Next time i will be more aware." That would have been acceptable, and logically sound to basically mean Sergio needs to get a thicker skin, but he didn't do that. He deflected. I'm not saying Sergio is right, he has a clear problem with pressure, the crowd, Tiger's presence overall. But, Tiger also knows that in the game of golf, its a gentlemen's game. Jack Nicholas calmed a crowd for Tom Watson, Tiger woods deflected a remarks by lying about it.

This is exactly what I've been trying to say as well.  (Not about Tiger lying - I don't yet know if that's true - but everything else)  Well said.

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As a European I like Sergio, he wears his heart on his sleeve, and he is a little nut case. Without him this weekend it wouldn't have been as exciting as it was. Tiger played well and won. It's nice to see some people challenging him for a change, no one else has the balls to do it. Even the commentators during the round were saying how difficult it must be to play with Tiger because of all the spectators around, and Tiger holes out first there is a rush to the next hole, even before the next guy has taken his shot.
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I don't think any golfers need defending. They are big enough boys and most of them are over 6 feet. Poor people, oppressed people, victims of crime and those who do not have the ability to stand for themselves are the ones that need defending. That said, I prefer golfers with a bit of attitude, could rouse the crowd or entertaining. I'd rather watch Sergio than many other golfers rank higher than him.
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Sergio did not choke in that round, far from it in fact. He was playing with great confidence on the back nine and chose to go for the pin on 17 in hopes of making birdie and sharing the lead. Very ballsy play - to win, not to come second. He hit a pin-seeker that fell short a tad - them's the breaks. He says he was feeling very confident about his play at that point and his choice showed it IMO. Not many players would have the confidence or the skill to make the attempt. You can criticize his decision on 17, fair enough, but to consider him to be choking at any time on Sunday is just laughable. The problem with Sergio is that he over-reacts to certain events when others would suck it up and move on. But he remains one of the greatest ball strikers in the game and I enjoy watching him play as much as I do any player, including Tiger and Phil. Let's not be suckers to the media storyline and get carried away with this.
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Originally Posted by Chas

Sergio did not choke in that round, far from it in fact. He was playing with great confidence on the back nine and chose to go for the pin on 17 in hopes of making birdie and sharing the lead. Very ballsy play - to win, not to come second. He hit a pin-seeker that fell short a tad - them's the breaks. He says he was feeling very confident about his play at that point and his choice showed it IMO. Not many players would have the confidence or the skill to make the attempt.

You can criticize his decision on 17, fair enough, but to consider him to be choking at any time on Sunday is just laughable.

The problem with Sergio is that he over-reacts to certain events when others would suck it up and move on. But he remains one of the greatest ball strikers in the game and I enjoy watching him play as much as I do any player, including Tiger and Phil.

Let's not be suckers to the media storyline and get carried away with this.

I agree with this.  I don't think Sergio choked on 17.  He was playing to win (I said this in an earlier post).  I am not certain I liked the decision, but if he had pulled that shot off we all would be singing a different tune today and have a different Players Champion.

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Originally Posted by ghalfaire

I agree with this.  I don't think Sergio choked on 17.  He was playing to win (I said this in an earlier post).  I am not certain I liked the decision, but if he had pulled that shot off we all would be singing a different tune today and have a different Players Champion.

Lingmerth was trying to win, but Sergio has too much of a history choking to not consider this another choke.  When Mark Sanchez threw an interception at a critical point in the game he'd claim he was trying to win the game too.   Winners pull off the shot or make the TD pass, chokers fail to perform under the pressure.

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Jack Nicklaus used to say that when he played in majors he could write off certain players even before the tournament started- the ones who were complaining about the setup of the course or the weather or whatever. Jack would often say hey, it rains on all of us, or we all have to play the same course. It was this mental toughness that won him 18 majors. It's that same mental toughness that has yielded 78 wins & 14 majors for Tiger. Winners don't whine. Winners don't talk in press conferences about how fate is out to get them. Winners don't glare & shake their heads when their playing partner's gallery makes noise when the player pulls a club out of the bag. And winners don't spit in cups.

Which makes Sergio what he is - a loser.

And it's sad, because he is living a dream life - he's young, rich and handsome. But to hear him talk, life constantly dicks him over.

A couple of years back he said that he doesn't think he will ever win a major. He's right. He won't - not with that attitude.

So, to answer the question the OP posted - no, I can't defend him.

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Lingmerth was trying to win, but Sergio has too much of a history choking to not consider this another choke.  When Mark Sanchez threw an interception at a critical point in the game he'd claim he was trying to win the game too.   Winners pull off the shot or make the TD pass, chokers fail to perform under the pressure.

What does Mark Sanchez have to do with it? Are you seriously suggesting that Sergio wasn't trying to win? If Sergio had hit the ball just a bit harder on 17 but on the identical line he would almost certainly have come second at least and might well have won the tournament the way he had been playing. Tiger hit a much worse shot into the water a little earlier - a truly terrible strike. Was that evidence of Tiger choking under pressure? I think not. That was an exciting finish by two superb golfers - why not just admit it.

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Originally Posted by zipazoid

Jack Nicklaus used to say that when he played in majors he could write off certain players even before the tournament started- the ones who were complaining about the setup of the course or the weather or whatever. Jack would often say hey, it rains on all of us, or we all have to play the same course. It was this mental toughness that won him 18 majors. It's that same mental toughness that has yielded 78 wins & 14 majors for Tiger. Winners don't whine. Winners don't talk in press conferences about how fate is out to get them. Winners don't glare & shake their heads when their playing partner's gallery makes noise when the player pulls a club out of the bag. And winners don't spit in cups.

Another thing Nicklaus said about closing out a tournament - he used that tension and excitment of the moment to his advantage.  When he was on the back nine in a major, and he was in the hunt, or in the lead, he said his heart rate was eleveated, his adrenaline was elevated, his muscles were tight, his focus was sharper.  Rather than fall apart, he would use all those factors to his advantage.  He would control those factors and use that nervousness to make a good swing, rather than the opposite.

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So what? Quoting Nicklaus is bringing nothing meaningful to the discussion of Sergio as a golfer. If Sergio was going to choke he would have done so long before the 17th tee. He took a big risk on a difficult hole/pin placement in an effort to win the tournament, something I can admire. He failed on that occasion, by a small margin as it happens. This sort of thing happens in golf all the time - perhaps some people haven't noticed .... And it's part of what makes golf exciting to watch sometimes, though not exactly relaxing - a bit like watching show jumping as I was telling my wife last Sunday. If you want to win at that, you sometimes have to push your horse to what you hope is just within its capabilities. But Sergio needs to get that chip off of his shoulder. How it got there I can only speculate.
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Originally Posted by zipazoid

A couple of years back he said that he doesn't think he will ever win a major. He's right. He won't - not with that attitude.

What if they changed Players status to (The Fifth) Major, would that be odd.

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Lingmerth's shot was aimed at the ridge and trickled down to the hole.  Sergio was trying a more direct approach, which was the strategic error.  Both were going for the pin, but Lingmerth's shot had more room for error.  That is Sergio's issue in majors.  He is a very talented player, but makes unforced errors.

IMHO I can never call any professional golfer a loser.  Top ten is still an outstanding achievement in a sport were two inches left or right on one shot can mean the difference in victory.

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Lingmerth's shot was aimed at the ridge and trickled down to the hole.  Sergio was trying a more direct approach, which was the strategic error.  Both were going for the pin, but Lingmerth's shot had more room for error.  That is Sergio's issue in majors.  He is a very talented player, but makes unforced errors.

IMHO I can never call any professional golfer a loser.  Top ten is still an outstanding achievement in a sport were two inches left or right on one shot can mean the difference in victory.

This is not true. Lingmerths shout into 17 was NEVER left of the pin. In fact out landed between three pin and the water. He did not use the contour of the green and in fact probably missed the shot.

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Originally Posted by boogielicious

IMHO I can never call any professional golfer a loser.  Top ten is still an outstanding achievement in a sport were two inches left or right on one shot can mean the difference in victory.

Good point. How many would trade places with Sergio? I would settle for his 2008 year when he made almost 7 million in earnings. He is living large making a killing in a game we pay to play. I don't really feel horrible for him. He created these circumstances in which he has to suffer (sarcasm). Sign me up!

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Originally Posted by Chas

What does Mark Sanchez have to do with it?

Are you seriously suggesting that Sergio wasn't trying to win?

If Sergio had hit the ball just a bit harder on 17 but on the identical line he would almost certainly have come second at least and might well have won the tournament the way he had been playing. Tiger hit a much worse shot into the water a little earlier - a truly terrible strike. Was that evidence of Tiger choking under pressure? I think not.

That was an exciting finish by two superb golfers - why not just admit it.

Sanchez is another example of a guy with a lot of potential that crumbles under pressure (Cowboy fans might want to add Romo to the list).  If Sergio wasn't a choker he'd have finished 2nd or 3rd worst case, he finished T8.   When a guy self destructs like he did, he's a choker.  Tiger hit a bad shot and recovered, Sergio hit a bad shot, then another and then another at 18...choked.

I agree, it was a superb finish by Lingmerth and Tiger, Sergio was playing to finish in the Top 10 by 18.

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I can easily defend him. Many in Tiger's gallery weren't sure if he was going to chip back in the fairway. When he pulled a wood to go for the green the crowd gets excited. Tiger knows they would react and all of this unfolds during Sergio's backswing. When asked, Tigers first instinct is to say the marshal said to go. I like all of this animosity between players, adds to the sport.
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Note: This thread is 2843 days old. We appreciate that you found this thread instead of starting a new one, but if you plan to post here please make sure it's still relevant. If not, please start a new topic. Thank you!

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