World’s Greatest Golfer Starts His Year This Week

Rory McIlroy, the world’s greatest golfer and favorite to topple Jack Nicklaus’s record of 19 majors, begins his 2015 this week in Abu Dhabi.  He’ll then tee it up two weeks later at the Dubai Desert Classic.

This week’s field in Abu Dhabi is loaded.  Besides Rory, there is Henrik Stenson, the world’s second-best player.  World #6 Justin Rose will also be in the field, along with U.S. Open title holder Martin Kaymer.

Oh, and world #10 Rickie Fowler will be there.  Like I said the field is packed.  If this event were in the U.S, it would be getting a lot of coverage from the American media.  Wait, no it wouldn’t.  The American golf is too busy covering the Phoenix Open three or four weeks away because Tiger Woods is playing.  He’s no. 34 in the world and hasn’t won a major in six years, so, yeah, of course he’s the only story for the American golf media.

Two English youngsters I can’t wait to see play are 23-year-old Eddie Pepperell and 20-year-old Matthew Fitzpatrick.  You will recall Fitzpatrick was low amateur at last year’s U.S. Open, and the year before at the British Open.

I’ll also be keeping an eye on Alexander Levy, whom you will recall from last year’s second-best tournament.  Tommy Fleetwood is also in the field; he has been playing solid golf and has very quietly worked his way up to world no. 52.  It seems like he’s been around forever, but he’s only 23 years old.  American Peter Uihlein is also playing.

There are many other rising and name players in the field, but, again, don’t expect to hear much about it from the American golf media.  Just be sure to tune into the broadcasts come Wednesday night/Thursday morning and the following three days.  Remember, the broadcast will have British announcers not American, and that is always a huge plus.

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5 Responses to World’s Greatest Golfer Starts His Year This Week

  1. Hennyb says:

    Lanny,
    I don’t know if you caught the Golf Channel last week, they were doing a “Year in Review, Look to 2015” type thing. I write to you as a follow up to Kelly Tilghman’s assertion that Jordan Spieth does not have the build or physical presence of Tiger. These guys must really be afraid of this kid. A few of the talking heads were going on and on about how he will never dominate like Tiger or Jack because he doesn’t hit the ball far enough! He just doesn’t have the explosive power of Tiger Woods. Are they trying to tell us a person who drives the ball 289 yards cannot compete with the “big guys” on tour?. Woods’ average driving distance is only 294 yards, a far cry from Bubba Watsons 314( but who’s counting). Yet he still gets it out there with the best of them. LOL. Golf is much more than hitting the long ball. Lee Trevino even said, (about Jordan) “He has it up here, he knows how to play golf.” I think your right they just can’t handle the success he had as a teenager and the amount of poise he has shown at such a young age.

    • lannyh says:

      Fantastic comment, Henny! I think you’re onto something about them fearing Spieth having success. With Rory, they can say, “But he’s not American,” and continue their Tiger obsession.

      Golf is about so much more than just distance. And like you said, who is “long” and who isn’t is a matter of opinion. Woods drives it five yards farther and that is the deciding factor?

      Again, great comment.

      • Scratch1957 says:

        When asked about Hogan’s never-equalled ball striking ability as to what was Hogan’s secret, the man who got it right was Gene Sarazen who tapped his head. Gardner Dickinson, who a college degree in psychology, was quoted in James Dodson’s bio that the Hawk had the IQ of a genius. Btw, Curt Sampson’s bio was greatly inferior to Dodson’s. Dodson knew a lot more abut Hogan than Sampson ever knew.
        I have already pointed out that U.S. Open Fairways and The Hogan Mystique fill in several of Dodson’s errors, which were innocent mistakes. If you’re interested, the SI Vault (online) has a nice writeup of the 1957 U. S. Open (which, as I have told you) I attended with a group of 5 other friends. We toured the the country, played 14 courses (including the Colonial CC in Fort Worth, TX). I won our tournament by one stroke on the last hole of the New Orleans CC.

      • lannyh says:

        Oh, thanks, I’ll go check that out. SI Vault is a great resource (that I forget about).

  2. Hennyb says:

    Scratch1957,
    As a Hogan fan I’m sure you have read “Hogan: The Man Who Played For Glory” By Gene Gregston. If you have not, its definitely a book worth reading. In his book Mr. Gregston also recalls his interviews with Gardner Dickinson and how Mr. Dickinson told him over the years he inconspicuously asked Hogan certain questions and how he would handle certain situations. Unbeknownst to Mr. Hogan these questions were from the standardized IQ test. Gardner Dickinson would always make a mental note as to how Mr. Hogan replied. Gardner Dickinson did say that based on his answers, Mr. Hogan’s IQ was off the charts.

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