The Background

This story starts in 2000 when Stephen Ames said of Tiger Woods:

He doesn’t look like he has enough respect for other players. Tiger’s coming across as bigger than the game.

He’s a spoiled 24-year-old. If I was in his position I’d be more considerate. If I was beating the spit out of [other players], I wouldn’t have to beat them in that way too. He made $11 million [in 1999], endorsed more than $50 million – what’s he got to be unhappy about?

Fast forward to the 2006 WGC Match Play and Ames is running his mouth again:

Anything can happen, especially where he’s hitting the ball.

Sure, Woods had been struggling with his driver, but he had still won the Buick Invitational just a month earlier.

The Scene

Woods set off in lightning fashion with six straight opening birdies winning every hole on the front nine. Ames managed to muster a par on the 10th which matched Tiger but saw him fall to a resounding defeat.

The 9&8 victory set the record for the largest win at the Match Play.

When questioned about whether Ames’ words had motivated Woods, he replied with three words:

Nine and eight.

You know what they say: A Tiger never forgets.