Michael Court: Golf needs Tiger

The question sounds simple enough, but even I struggled to answer it. And I’m a golf tragic. Who won this year’s US PGA Championship?

Now I could see his face, in my mind, and I knew he was related to former Women’s US Open champion Pat Bradley, but what was his first name?

Tiger Woods Woods in action at the 2011 Presidents Cup (Credit: Anthony Powter)

Sure, I should have known it was Keegan Bradley. But ask me this time next year and I guarantee I will be just as nonplussed.

Why, I hear you ask?

Because apart from one magical putt that Bradley holed on the 17th hole, the final major of the year was pretty forgettable. Here’s an even tougher question? Who did Bradley beat in the playoff?

But I’ll bet you probably all know that Tiger Woods missed the cut in that PGA Championship.

I don’t know your thoughts on Tiger Woods and frankly I don’t really care but I do know he has lost a lot of fans over the past couple of years.

But I still love him.

And I loved watching him play at The Lakes recently in the Australian Open and also the Presidents Cup in Melbourne, where he holed out the winning putt in his match with Aaron Baddeley.

Granted Tiger might not have the aura anymore – and a lot of people want to suggest that he will never get it back.

I even read some quotes where his fellow American Rocco Mediate, whom Tiger beat in an 18-hole US Open playoff in 2008 was “disgusted” with what was going on with the former world No 1.

“I love the way he plays, but I’m disgusted with what’s going on with him because it’s sad for our game,” Mediate was quoted as saying.

Maybe he should telephone Ian Baker-Finch and have a chat with him.

You know we’re I’m coming from don’t you? We’re all searching for the perfect golf swing.

Even when we play well, we always want to play better.

And that makes Tiger Woods no different than the rest of us.

But let’s cut him a little bit of slack here too.

He’s had more injuries than most can expect in a lifetime of golf.

He’s had knee problems, elbow problems, head problems, you name it.

If and when he can put it all together, he’ll be back.

My sweetest memories in golf are watching him run away with the US Masters in 1997 at Augusta National and then streeting the world’s best players to win by 15 shots at Pebble Beach in 2000.

If anyone has played better golf than those two wins in the past 10 years, please do let me know about it.

Let’s think positive. Tiger will be back – and oh, don’t we need him to show why he’s the best when he’s on and yes, he may be the best ever.