Golf should be better than Tiger V Phil and so should you

Bernie McGuire

It wasn’t long ago that I associated repulsive mounds of cash with the work of science teacher turned meth-mastermind Heisenberg in the fictional series Breaking Bad. Dirty money of course, poor Walter White had nowhere to wash it, instead filling a storage unit with the fruits of his precious labour in towering stacks of bills.

Nowadays, as I wade through the unfulfilling abyss of social media, wads upon wads of the normally elusive green dollar are paraded before me by the blissfully unaware and ignorant, far more regularly than should be deemed acceptable.

It’s sad what we consume but I must shamefully admit that I stumbled across James Cordon’s Carpool Karaoke in a recent YouTube meander to find a rap trio by the name of Migos flaunting $90,000 dollars in cash across the back seat of his car. I’m not familiar with their work but it would take me a long time to earn what they had Cordon counting out for them like a puppet on a string, all in the name of entertainment of course. I turned it off feeling sad.


Boxer turned celebrity clown, Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather is another who regularly posts obscene masses of money atop the skin of an endangered species draped upon his ivory bed, again trying to impress his adorers. A fine role model, he places single bets upward of $100,000 dollars on halves of basketball, uploading his slip to the world whether it wins or loses as if the people can relate to it.

Some do of course, inspired by the money that Floyd can seemingly burn. But I’d like to think the majority look upon his behaviour and cringe, safe in the knowledge that should a time come where they’re bestowed such fortune, they’d actually use it for something good, or at the very least keep it hidden in a bank.

Maybe I’m just jealous, or mad, or both, but if I was to rock into my local pub with a clip of fifties making it rain of a Friday night, best case scenario would see me drinking alone. In fairness, what type of person would want to be caught dead with someone so horrifically removed from real life?

For some reason I thought golf was above all this, that our values were somehow held higher, but then there was Tiger and Phil.

“The Match”, set for Shadow Creek Golf Club in Las Vegas tomorrow pits two of golf’s greats, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson against each other in the name of, what?

Not golf anyway, or the direction in which the game has been aimed in recent years. In fact, it embodies the exact opposite of everything the sport has worked so hard to remove from its dark shadow. I was under the impression that golf was trending towards inclusivity, intent on making the game more accessible to the everyman.

A pay-per-view faceoff between two former foes, now phony friends, for a $9 million dollar cash bonanza benefiting just two doesn’t exactly fall in line with increasing participation numbers. Deciding on pay-per-view alone is alienating the vast majority of audiences that could do with seeing such a tussle. Or maybe those unable to afford a glimpse of this game of greed should count themselves fortunate, particularly given the embarrassingly rehearsed trade-off of poorly written insults that spewed from the pre-round press conference.

Granted, at least the side bets are going to a worthy cause but does betting $200,000 on the outcome of a single hole of golf represent anything you’d want to support. Surely we could do away with the heinous peacocking of two grown men comparing shaft sizes and instead  put the whole pot towards the causes deemed most in need – nominated by two heroic fundraisers clearly not short of a penny. After all, what could be more fulfilling for two athletes, graced with talent that’s earned them enough money to last a thousand lifetimes already, than raising $9million dollars in unison for those far less fortunate, on Thanksgiving of all days to boot.

Instead, I woke up to a picture of the pair of them standing proud behind a pile of money that meant little to their existence, expecting me to smile.

I for one, won’t be lining their pockets any further.

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