My roommate Paul and I were watching the Skins Game on TV yesterday. It’s a golf match with just four players who compete to win a cash prize on each hole. It’s very different from normal tournament play and the players are usually much more relaxed, joking and laughing with one another. But one incident goes to show much of a competitor Tiger Woods is, even in a friendly little game. ESPN has the whole story but here’s what happened.
It was the 18th hole which was worth $200,000 to the guy who won it. Even for Tiger that’s a lot of money. He had hit his approach shot long, landing on the bunker behind the green. Here’s how ESPN describes what happened:
Woods needed to get up-and-down for birdie from a back bunker on the par-5 18th to keep Phil Mickelson from capturing the final skin. A man standing directly behind Woods clicked his camera in the middle of his swing, and Woods looked back in disgust as his ball rolled 15 feet by the hole. ‘‘I flinched,’’ Woods said. ‘‘I was lucky to keep the ball on the green.’‘
Caddie Steve Williams took the man’s camera and dropped it in the lake.
Priceless! For those who don’t know, Tiger has been afflicted by photographers. As the most famous golfer, more people want his picture than anyone else. So when he’s swinging sometimes a photographer gets a little too quick on the shutter and clicks during his swing. That bit of sound on an otherwise silent green can be enough to make him flinch. That same thing happened during the British Open and during the World Golf Championship.
I’m sure the guy has a new camera today, but he lost his film and was embarrassed in front of his colleagues and the whole gallery and now all ESPN Online readers. I’m sure he won’t have an itchy shutter finger again anytime soon.