Thursday, 17 December 2009

Tiger voted Athlete of the Noughties - He has been a very active boy...

Rumours that Don Cheadle is putting himself forward for the role in a Tiger Woods biopic have gathered pace with the uncovering of this photo. Uncanny isn't it - Need a clue? Don is the one in the Puma shirt...

So there it is, Tiger Woods, was voted Athlete of the decade by US sports editors in an Associated Press poll, getting 56 of the 142 votes to beat out cancer defeater and seven time Tour winner Lance Armstrong and clean cut 15 time grand slam winner Roger Federer.

It's unclear at this point as to whether his extracurricular activities played a role in the win but lets face it who else has dominated their sport to such a degree whilst partaking in what must have been a strenuous nightly regime of personal excercise.

Richly deserved.

It'll likely be of cold comfort to Woods, as it looks as though his sabbatical to save his marriage will not be a successful one, the divorce lawyers have already been called into play. I just hope that he can get things back on track now, before the story turns from a scandal into a tragedy.

In other news - TW:the movie starring Don Cheadle, surely it's on his way.

Friday, 11 December 2009

Tiger Woods, Sex Panther. A big cat marriage made in hot love heaven....

So there hasn't been an advert screened featuring Tiger Woods since two days after "the crash". That's loyalty for you, I mean talk about fairweather sponsors!

I guess at least in the interim Tiger is going to struggle to attract new sponsors, until he gets back on the course and starts ripping it up again. Watch them come back in their droves then as the redemptive powers of another Green Jacket cover over his trangressions or another Claret Jug washes away his personal sins in the eyes of Joe Public. They'll be clamouring over him again like flies round shite...

But for the meantime Tiger may want to take advantage of his hitherto unknown prowess with the ladies. How about stepping into the brogues of Anchorman hero Brian Fantana and working as spokes model for Sex Panther.

I can see it now - "Sex Panther - it brings out the Tiger in you..."

I'm sure there's all sorts of clever approaches you could take on the whole Tiger/Panther angle. Let's hope that the rumours that money was exchanged for transgressions turns out to be unfounded - Brian Fantana sure as hell never had to pay for it. That goes against everything Sex panther stands for. That's why you use Sex Panther - so you don't have to! Let's hope another potential sponsor doesn't go adrift, he'll have to fill the Tiger kitty somehow.
Sex Panther is available for purchase at more than just your local illegal chinese product emporiums - it's gone mainstream - an event which may explain a recent spike in birthrates

Monday, 7 December 2009

World Challenge win for Furyk and a handy lift for wee Graeme.

He might not have won the tournament but the Graeme McDowell certainly acheived what he set out to do at the start of the week. Hovering on the wrong side of the top 50 in the world rankings, McDowell was dangerously close to missing out on next years Masters but after claiming a runners up spot, our wee Graeme should now be guaranteed to be teeing it up at Augusta come April. That must have been his main concern when he was handed this opportunity when it was clear Tiger was unable to attend due to his, ahem, injuries, so bully for him.

He was of course in with an excellent chance of winning yesterday, coming into the final round sharing the lead with YE Yang after a sensational 66 on saturday. He was overhauled in the end though by Jim Furyk, who finished strong to record his second 67 in a row for a total of 13 under. Despite making birdie on the last McDowell still finished one off Furyk. Westwood and Harrington finished joint third, making it a pretty good week for the European big dogs.

Big Jim will be a popular winner. Amazingly it's his first win for over two years. I guess it seems surprising as he has remained a consistent presence on leaderboards throughout that time, finishing runner up as recently as the BMW Championship. It raises him up the rankings to sixth in the world.

His winless streak is something that has bothered him...

"It's bothered me. I'd be lying if I said otherwise. That's your goal every year
to go out and win, and I haven't been able to do it. Hopefully, this will be a
stepping stone."

Fingers crossed it is, we need guys who do it their way up there at the front, and no one swings a club quite like Jim Furyk, with good reason....


Tiger did not make any appearance, he's still in head down mode as the revelations continue, but did post a message on his website.

"As the final round of the Chevron World Challenge begins, I would like to
extend my heartfelt thank you to everyone affiliated with the event, especially
our amazing title sponsor, Chevron. They've been title sponsor for the last two
years and have a vision and passion for creating real opportunities for my
Foundation. I thank them for their ongoing commitment.
I'd also like to thank all of our supporting sponsors and my tireless, dedicated staff, board and volunteers who collectively produce this first-class golf tournament. I am so grateful to them for their efforts, and I am sincerely sorry I was unable to
fulfill my duties as host and player in this important event.
There are also 18 outstanding pros in the field, and I thank them for providing us all with some excellent competition this week.
Lastly, I'd like to thank our fans for continuing to support us. Like them, I am extremely dedicated to this tournament, to my Foundation and the millions of young lives we serve. Thank you all for your support."

I'm sure that the sponsors will find this apology more than makes up for the masses of lost revenue this week. We'll see him next year I guess, if not on Oprah first....

Friday, 4 December 2009

Tigergate - how they could have handled it...

I've been thinking - careful I hear you cry, thats dangerous - but I have been thinking - How, if it were ever possible could Tiger have effectively deflected the attention his very public car crash received. The holes in his story were so wide even he could have driven an Escalade through them. So what could he have done. He should have gone straight for leftfield, came up with an angle we'd have bought if not because it was beleivable then because it was so batshit crazy that it had to be true. To apply more spin than Tiger gets off a 60 degree lob wedge. Here's just a few ideas that just may have saved Tigers bacon...

Option 1 - Blame Steve Williams
Release a statement saying that Tiger was on the wrong end of probably the worst yardage reading Steve Williams had ever given but the Kiwi didn't stick around to take the blame. Having turned up trollied at Tigers thanksgiving do, Williams slurredly told Woods he had Seventy yards Tiger And after failing to spot the danger of the water hazard to the rear too.

Option 2 - Blame Steve Williams Jealous nature
Upon hearing rumours through the grapevine that Tiger had been seen around town with a new caddy, a jealous Steve Williams set out to destroy his potential rival. After long faithful years giving 100% to get his 10% Williams was not going to go quietly into the night. Hiring a team of specialist hitmen via a secure phomeline, he gave the oblique instructions to "Nobble Tigers new caddy". Taking the opportunity whilst secure in the knowledge Woods would be at his Thanksgiving dinner, the hired guns sneaked in and sabotaged his Escalade, mucking up the steering as well as rigging the windows to smash on impact just to piss Woods off. Upon hearing of the crash Williams and realising how terribly wrong he had been, Williams then took advantage of the false rumours about Rachel Uchitel and hired a series of ladies to make false rumours. A benovelent and over protective Woods, realising that Williams would face charges should the truth emerge decided to take the hit to ensure he has his main man on his bag come Augusta.

Option 3 -Blame EA Sports change of direction

The events of the past four days have in fact been an elaborate attempt to expand the incredibly successful Tiger Woods gaming franchise into the Grand theft auto Market. Play as Tiger Woods as he rides in his Escalade - he can't negotiate the driveway from hell, can you? Plans to offer gameplay as a golf club wielding Elin have been shelved due to the negative public reaction - hence Tigers denials of any physical violence taking place. Expect Tiger Woods 11 - "Playa" to be in stores next July.

I'm available for PR advice on a pro rata basis...

He's not the messiah - He's a very naughty boy!

And then a booming voice said "Let there be no false idols before me - as a precaution I've set up a website called TMZ to catch out the naughty false messiahs in particularly embarrassing and public circumstances...

I think we all feel a bit let down by Tiger, but some have invested more time and devotion to him than others and are feeling the pinch a bit more as a result. One such person is the pastor of Tiger's church.

The First Church of Tiger Woods - celebrating the emergence of the "true" messiah - has been running since 2000. Nine years. Nine years of celebrating one of the most amazing golfing talents the world has ever seen. It's a really funny website and is worth a retrospective look - it drives home just how highly we all thought of Tiger.

But in light of the recent revelations the founder and chief celebrant of the church John Ziegler has turned his back on Woods, his fallen idol. It's a pretty good barometer of the feelings of some of his most ardent fans. The ones who invested so much in following his career are no feeling the most disenchantment at his fall from grace.

The church is to be disbanded - the name of the website changed to "The Damnation of Tiger Woods" and the man who used to preach his Gospel has resolved not to write of Woods again except to cover the breaking tales of his "transgressions" as and when they come out. It's a full blown conversion from the evangelist to chronicler of his demise.

“After several days of evaluation, I have decided to disband the First Church of Tiger Woods (as indicated by the graphics at the top of this website) and I will not renew the TigerWoodsIsGod domain name when it expires in a couple of months. Any future commentary on this site (which may not happen at all) will be regarding Tiger’s failings in relation to his affair/accident debacle which continues to unfold almost by the hour."

“Because the First Church of Tiger Woods has been in existence since late 1996 and this website has been around since early 2000, you might think that such a decision might be difficult. In this case, it was not. Unfortunately, Tiger Woods has made it all too easy to realize that he is no longer worthy of any special admiration. “The events of the past few days have revealed Tiger to be a serial adulterer, a blatant liar and a selfish coward. While I am sure I will always respect his ability as a golfer, that was only a very small part of why this much-misunderstood website was created and why it became such a big part of my life. "

“As I have documented in my columns below, Tiger is clearly no longer deserving of being seen as a role model or a hero and he has needlessly squandered his unique potential to be a positive force in our country and the world. While I am relatively sure that Tiger will make a comeback from this sad episode and that there will be great moments for him in the future, I personally am done with Tiger Woods and I doubt that I will even care very much about whatever else he might achieve on the golf course (for someone who once vowed to make sure he lived until he saw Tiger get to 19 major championships, I have a hard time believing I can write those words with such ease).”

In doing so Ziegler seems to have broken in spectacular fashion the tenth of his commandments, a commandment which seems to have an almost freakish prescience to this weeks goings on.

X. Thou shall pay no attention to Tiger’s apparent flaws. (we at the First Church are sure that there are good reasons for Tiger’s over-commercialization, temper, choice of girlfriend, lack of college degree, conflict of interest with CBS sportsline, and acceptance of appearance fees through his deal with Buick. One can not question the will of God.)

There's been a lot of people who seem to still be resolutely keeping this commandment but I'm beginning to sense that the attitude of the many shall begin to follow that of his once greatest prophet in turning their back on Woods.

It think it's telling that the actual breaking point seems to have come from Woods no show at the Chevron World Challenge -

"Now, there is no doubt about it. Tiger Woods is a lying coward. Even after all the missteps of the past couple of days, if Tiger had shown up, done his press conference, finally told the whole truth, played his guts out and donated his winnings to to his foundation, it would have been possible to forgive him and perhaps eventually restore him to his place atop the lofty pedestal that he alone had seemingly been to born to occupy. We learned today that is not going to happen. "

I think he has a point. I think Tiger could have done himself a lot of favours by doing something like this rather than concentration on the poor attempts he's made at damage limitation. Amen brother John, Amen. Hopefully though when Tiger does get off the naughty step and back onto the course he can still appreciate him for the amazing Golfer he is.

In an alternate Universe, Woods might have got away with it...

The Tiger Woods Crash saga has not been a complete disaster for all involved. Just nearly all involved. Apart from those making money off the back off selling their stories there has been one entirely blameless beneficiary.
Yes, curious disciples of Tiger, maybe thinking that there is some small nugget of physics knowledge contained in the paperback which is the key to his success have rushed to get their hands on it. The author, John Gribbin, said he was "delighted that anyboy's reading my books. I just wish it was one that's still in print."
Here'es the blurb on what Gribbins back catalogue is about...
Best known for In Search of Schrödinger's Cat, an exploration of the mysteries of quantum physics still selling well 25 years after it was first published, Gribbin has amassed a back catalogue which ranges widely over modern science. His latest book is In Search of the Multiverse, which charts ideas about alternative realities from Hugh Everett's many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics to recent developments in M-theory pointing to a landscape of alternative universes in string theory.
Then at the bottom of the article possibly the best put down to come out of this yet -
"Perhaps Woods will see if he can find a universe in which none of this ever happened," suggested Gribbin.

Ian Poulter Rises to the World Challenge... but rounds out with a damp fart finish

Ian realised on looking at the ball that it wasn't his, but he'd just recorded a birdie so he kept walking...

In and amongst all the hullabaloo, some proper Golf Tournaments are actually taking place this week. That includes the Chevron World Challenge. Of course the concentration of covereage is on who is not there this week, the golfing world still reeling from the news that Vijay Singh is one of two high profile withdrawls. But with or without the massive interest generated by Vijay's presence as defending champ, there's still enough big names left to make this a cracker of a shoot out.

18 players are invited there this week and leading the way early doors are Zach Johnson and Ian Poulter, sharing the lead on four under The charasmatic Englishman should really have been out in front and was making the running but as he tweeted himself, it was the par 5's which stopped him really running away with it and a poor double bogey to finish too.

"hello folks, not quite the finish i was looking for. played the 5s so poorly 2 3 putt pars and a bogey, should have shot a really low round"

As it is he's got quite a few just on his tail, Johnson obviously, Harrington one back and then Furyk, Cink and Y.E. Yang too. Newly crowned European number One Lee Westwood is one under alongside TW replacement Graeme McDowell.

I'd like to see Poulter do well this week, Golf could do with a touch of the feelgood factor he brings right now. I do worry that he may suffer from no making hay when the sun shines though...

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Tigers comments on current events - is that what they're calling it these days...

First of all, I love the the little "By Tiger Woods" at the top of the page. It kind of lends it the feel of a letter of apology written by a naughty schoolboy, saying sorry for breaking the window of the old lady next door. Cap in hand, looking up doe eyed as he hands it over, he knows he made a boo boo. It's what we've all been waiting for - no not a blow by blow account of what went on, an apology to those deserving of it, his family. About time.

Here's the statement in full.

Tiger comments on current events

By Tiger Woods

I have let my family down and I regret those transgressions with all of my heart. I have not been true to my values and the behavior my family deserves. I am not without faults and I am far short of perfect. I am dealing with my behavior and personal failings behind closed doors with my family. Those feelings should be shared by us alone.

Although I am a well-known person and have made my career as a professional athlete, I have been dismayed to realize the full extent of what tabloid scrutiny really means. For the last week, my family and I have been hounded to expose intimate details of our personal lives. The stories in particular that physical violence played any role in the car accident were utterly false and malicious. Elin has always done more to support our family and shown more grace than anyone could possibly expect.

But no matter how intense curiosity about public figures can be, there is an important and deep principle at stake which is the right to some simple, human measure of privacy. I realize there are some who don't share my view on that. But for me, the virtue of privacy is one that must be protected in matters that are intimate and within one's own family. Personal sins should not require press releases and problems within a family shouldn't have to mean public confessions.

Whatever regrets I have about letting my family down have been shared with and felt by us alone. I have given this a lot of reflection and thought and I believe that there is a point at which I must stick to that principle even though it's difficult.

I will strive to be a better person and the husband and father that my family deserves. For all of those who have supported me over the years, I offer my profound apology.

The main thing to be said is that whilst still pretty defensive, and not entirely forthcoming, at least he's made a public apology and acknowledgement that he has made "transgressions", which I think is about as sordid and detailed an insight into what Tiger did from his own mouth as you're ever gonna get. To me that's enough. He's put his hands up, said he's done something wrong and that he wants to work that out with his family.

Again I don't think it's going to be enough to stop the salacious rumours from flying around but what sort of statement ever would - at least he's taking a humbler stance, rather than making out it's entirely the medias fault. What struck me about his first statement was that while attempting to take the heat off Elin, there was no hint of an apology, just an unrepentant lash-out at the media for trying to piece together a particularly odd event in a superstars life from scraps of blurry information at a time of intense speculation about his personal life.

This statement changes the tone, something which definitely needed to happen as commentators became increasingly unsympathetic to a silent Woods. They might not appreciate his complaints but I think with his acknowledgement of blame and appeal to be let deal with this with his family may things may now cool off a little. Some will still hanker for the sackcloth and ashes humiliation in the street but this should sway public opinion into letting it die.

I'm just surprised it didn't come sooner - what has he said that could not have been said two days ago? Other than perhaps "I have been dismayed to realize the full extent of what tabloid scrutiny really means"... But I think when someone offers an apology, you're obliged to take it at face value and at the end of the day it's his wife and kids he has to make this up to, not the tabloids and not us.

Tiger, you have let the side down a bit, but I think in the coming days as far as the fans are concerned, you'll find your apology accepted.

So tell me Tiger, how does one amuse thyself in those long lonely hours on the road?

I do love the delicious irony, right below a statement, just released where Tiger apologises for his "transgressions", is a link to a chumly Q and A where Tiger answers questions on how he copes with life on the road, away from his family...
Rupert from Houston asks - Do you enjoy playing so far away from home? I can imagine that, now that you have children, it's got to be hard to be so far away from them.
TW - "You're exactly right, Rupert. Now, it's very difficult to leave Elin and the children, and I'm sure it's only going to get tougher. Once Sam and Charlie start school, it won't be easy to take them out of class for a week-long trip. A veteran pro once told them it's tough to leave them as babies, but once they ask you not to go, it breaks your heart. That's something I'll always remember. "
I like the typo there, It's like the veteran pro was talking to his kids. Maybe he was reassuring them that Daddy will find it harder to go in later years... You'd think a PR eagle eye would have moved that by now. But then they haven't been doing a great job handling this now have they.
Just read Tigers statement - a public apology to his family - the least he could do really - quite a bit more gracious than the previous statement too. Not a full blown confessional but I think that might be enough. For some at least...

Video of Tigers crash - seemingly from the makers of Captain Scarlet...

Just saw this on the Guardian Sport Blog, by way of GeoffShackleford. It's possibly the greatest reanactment of anything ever. The sooner that Crimewatch adopts this technology the better, ratings would soar. Much less crimes would probably be solved buy isn't that a price worth paying?

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

As my ma would say, "Tell the truth and shame the devil"

Tiger is now getting some sage advice from an unlikely source on how he should handle the media storm that currently swirls around him. No less a man than the wild thing himself John Daly.

"The thing that Tiger needs to look at is, whatever happened, just tell the truth."

Amen John, you can never underestimate the forgiving nature of the public at large. As John McCain might have put it, Joe the plumber want's to know what's what. He doesn't care what you've done, just come out say you know what, this happened, if needs be say you're sorry and let's move the hell on with things. It's an attitude which has certainly served Daly well. There are few of Daly's indiscretions which are not in the public domain and does one man jack hold any of them against him? No, they love him all the more for it. Joe the plumber loves a straight talker. It worked for Letterman after all, they'll seemingly forgive anything Britney gets up to and love her for it and would Amy be so big without the Rehab?

Daly went on to advise Woods to coem to the tournament this week, and I think that's also a good idea, better to face the music sooner rather than later than risk attempting a Howard Hughes existence til next years schedule kicks off.

"Hopefully he'll go out there with his wife and his kids and support the sponsor of his tournament. The most important thing right now is for them to be together.

"He'll get over this. The family will get over it. They'll move on. Golf needs him. I hate for something like that to happen to anybody. I just want him and his wife and kids to be happy and for him to keep pursuing the goals that he had. Tiger's the biggest asset the tour's had in a long, long time. Whatever happened, as long as he's okay that's all that matters. Golf needs him badly... no doubt."

Truth John, the longer you leave it the harder it gets...

Any worries the sponsors may have had about Woods not being there have will no doubt have been assuaged by the knowledge that my countryman Graeme McDowell has stepped into the breech to fill the gap left by Woods. Our Graeme is a marketeers dream, news interest always spikes when Northern Ireland's third most famous Golfer is in the field... It's a fantastic opportunity for him to bag enough ranking points to get into the worlds top 50 again and take a spot in the Masters. I bet there are a few guys sitting around the 50 mark wondering how the hell his agent swung that for him!

The happy news for the sponsors though is that with Woods absence being reported worldwide, I doubt that so many people have ever been aware that the Chevron World Challenge would be taking place this weekend. That's why Golf needs Woods, he's pure Box office.