BUTCH WELCOMES DRUG TESTS
Gary Player isn’t the only one who believes there are drug cheats in golf. Swing guru Butch Harmon feels the same way.
Gary Player isn’t the only one who believes there are drug cheats in Golf. Swing guru Butch Harmon feels the same way.
Harmon, if fact, is so convinced that there are players within the game who are using performance-enhancing drugs, he has expressed delight at the fact that drug-testing is due to start on both the European and PGA Tours on July 1.
Interviewed in a forthcoming issue of Golf World and quoted in The Guardian, the 64-year-old coach who tutored Tiger Woods at the turn of the Century and now, among his many charges, takes care of Phil Mickelson’s swing, said: “You have it (testing) in all sports and I think it is a very good thing it is coming to golf.
“We would be pretty naive to think that someone hasn’t taken a growth hormone or a steroid just to allow themselves to recover from injuries or to hit more balls and (make) their bodies react better.”
Harmon added that he has his suspicions about some players.
“I don’t know of anyone specifically who is taking anything,” he said. “But I have my own suspicions.
“Because I don’t know for a fact, though, I would never say anybody’s name.”
Last year Player claimed that he was personally aware of 10 players who were using or had used performance-enhancing substances and was widely condemned at the time for his comments.
They did set off a sequence of events, however, that have led to the introduction for the first time of an official drug testing program in professional golf, but Harmon remains critical of Player in one aspect.
“Gary said he knew of 10 people (taking drugs) and he is a pretty smart man. But if you are going to make that statement – that you know for sure – then you should name names.”
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