Even before the dust settles on Tiger Wood’s issue, the Associated Press (AP) unanimously named him as the Athlete of the decade ahead of the Lance Amstrong , a cycler and Roger Federer, a tennis player. The award comes one week after Woods decided to take an indefinite leave from any golf tournament.
For one to appreciate why the AP settled on Woods, one need to keenly study what this man has achieved in the last ten or so years.
In golf, there are so many tournaments that take place annually, but the most significant that any golfer strives to win, is at least a grand slam.
Usually, there are four grand slams in a year i.e. The Master (played in April), the US open (played in June), the British Open (played in July) and PGA Championship (played in August). If a golfer manages to win all the four grand slam in his career, even if it’s not in one calendar year, he achieves what many refer to as a Career Grand slam.
The reason as to why I am reflecting on grand slam issues is because Woods is one of the only two people who have won three career grand slams. This means that he has at least won each grand slam title not less than three times. This is not a simple feat in any golf standards. His endorsement, sponsorship deals, earning and not to mention world ranking has placed him among the best players to ever emerge in the links.
It was Tiger’s statement of indicating that he might play in the Olympics incase golf was featured as an event, that immensely added more weight to the International Olympic Committee in accepting that golf should be included as an official sport in the 2016 Olympics.
The AP has done really well in honoring Woods especially at this difficult time. He deserves the award more than any other player I can think of. Of course the award will not calm the storm he is currently facing but it has reminded the world who Tiger Wood is on the golf course.
He is the sport’s greatest ambassador and his close relationship he enjoys with Nike reminds me of a similar relationship Nike once had with Michael Jordan, a retired US basketballer. The big question however remains, when Woods makes a come back to the sport that not only nurtured him but also nurtured it as well, will he be able to climb back to the top?