5 Things: Tiger update, a bad week for Rio golf and Day hints at retirement

Golf News

The Tiger fitness conundrum continues with time running out to make it to Royal Troon, Jason Day might be done by 40 and not a good week for golf in Rio

1) Tiger Woods update: There is no update

Tiger Woods is still yet to play a tournament as a 40-year-old and 10 months after his last start we still don’t know when he will.

The World No 582 was the tournament host at the Quicken Loans National but the likelihood of him returning to action is still unclear. There were the usual positive noises and blank phrases that we have heard in the past but no actual date.

“I’m still progressing, and I’m still getting stronger,” Woods said. “I’m excited about what has transpired so far. I’m getting leaner. I’ve lost some body fat but kept the weight up. I’ve gotten stronger, and it’s just about recovering from day to day. I’m just playing it week to week. I keep getting physically better. I just hope everything clicks in, and I can do it sooner than later.”

Sooner might be The Greenbrier on July 7 but that would mean then playing two weeks on the trot at the Open at Troon. Again, that looks unlikely.

“It’s about four, five days in a row, it’s about me playing 36 holes daily, getting up to speed and playing. I’m not quite there yet. I’m trying to get there, I’m trying to get there as fast as I can, but I’m trying to do it right at the same time. As you know, I’ve pushed through a lot of injuries and rehabs before in the past – trying to do it correctly this time.”

 

 

2) Day might be done by 40

Lydia Ko has repeatedly said that she plans to retire at 30. Now her fellow World No 1 Jason Day has said that life might begin, outside of golf, at 40.

The Australian is 28 and broke his Major duck last year. This year he has won three times – at Bay Hill, a WGC and at The Players – and has threatened at both Majors in 2016. Of the so-called Big Three he has made the most progress this term. But he has admitted that a life away from golf might not be that far away.

“When I get to 40, I’m going to re-evaluate everything and then go from there,” Day said. “Because when I get to 40, I would like to see where I’m at in my career because I might want to go, ‘You know what, I’m done. I’m just happy with everything,’ and I’m going to go off my merry way and I’ll probably never pick up a golf club ever again.”

On a brighter note he insisted that, fitness wise, his best days should be still to come. In previous times he admitted that he used to hide his pudgy face with a beard.

“I was really sick and tired of getting injured. I’m just trying to extend the longevity of my career. The biggest thing is, if you want it still, you’ll do everything you need to do to make sure you extend your career.

“From the vertigo (at Chambers Bay), I found out how far I can push myself physically and also mentally.”

3) Grace the next to give Rio a swerve

The big news of the week came when Rory decided to bypass his chance to win an Olympic gold. Two days later the World No 11 Branden Grace followed suit, the Zika virus again being the cause of the withdrawal.

Rory McIlroy withdraws from the Olympics

South Africa have now seen three of their top names pull out – Charl Schwartzel also cited the Zika virus while scheduling issues got the better of Louis Oosthuizen – which leaves Jaco Van Zyl and Brandon Stone in the hotseat.

Grace explained that he is getting married in November and plans to start a family soon. He has won twice this season, in Qatar and at Hilton Head, was 5th at Oakmont and would have been considered a genuine medal hope.

Here he is tossing a pancake…

 

4) IOC member threatens golf’s exclusion from the Games

Every week or so it seems one top player after another has pulled out of golf’s return to the Olympics, with either the Zika Virus or scheduling difficulties being blamed.

So when does enough become enough and the authorities get a bit fed up with their recent bedfellows?

According to one IOC member, Barry Maister, maybe not too long. The 68-year-old, who won a gold medal for New Zealand in field hockey at Montreal in 1976, was speaking to a local radio station, Newstalk ZB, and his patience already appears to have run out.

“I don’t like it, and I don’t think the sport should be allowed to continue in the Games under that scenario,” Maister said. “Once they’ve got in, they have got to deliver. Just getting in with your name, and then putting up some second or third-rate players is so far from the Olympic ideal or the expectation of the Olympic Movement. The Olympics is about the best, and they pledged the best. Quite frankly, any sport that cannot deliver its best athletes, in my view, should not be there.”

 

5) Tweet of the week – Paul Lawrie

This almost looks impossible to carry off but Paul Lawrie managed to see his tee shot finish down a fan’s shirt. The Scot had already sprayed one out of bounds when he hooked his tee shot into this fellow’s polo shirt. Equally as bizarrely the fact that the man was wearing a vest made the shot possible.

 

 

 

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