Video report by ITV News Presenter and Reporter Faye Barker
I don’t know much about golf. Apart from it’s played with a club, the only other thing I really know was told to me a few years ago: “If I’d won I’d tell you, if I don’t tell you it means I lost, so best not to ask.”
I do know about Tiger Woods though and it’s a measure of his incredible appeal that, even for someone as unengaged in sport as I am, he transcends.
We are the same age and I remember Nick Faldo giving him his first Green Jacket at 21. His first Masters, a record breaking win. Talk of him being 18 under par lost me then as it does now, but it was obviously a huge achievement and many more followed. Not just in golf but in life.
His dad described him as the “Chosen One”, the bridge between East and West with a Thai mother and a Black American father. They weren’t just the words of a proud dad, they were the words of a dad whose son re-wrote perceptions through his sport.
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And then it went awry. This boy who had been trained on the golf course, from the days he was trained out of nappies, lost his drive.
What followed was a tragedy of life, love, headlines, hope. Bereavement, crashes, scandal, health disasters, you name them he had them. Some were hugely unedifying and not to be dismissed simply as a bad time, there was harm to more than just him.
And yet this man, who has carved his whole life with determination, did it again. Counted out by many, he came back to win the 2019 Masters. He was busy with more stuff these past days.
He literally went off the road this week, we don’t know how yet, but you don’t need to be a lover of golf nor a physician to know there are more challenges ahead.
This man, who has overcome so much has to dig deep once more. The cumulative effects of the continual fight will most probably be his biggest challenge as he braces for another return.