The day will eventually come when Tiger Woods makes his last putt, takes his cap off and acknowledges the crowd for what will be an incredibly emotional send off for a player that has transformed the game of golf.
Without Woods, a young lad by the name of Rory McIlroy from Northern Ireland may never have taken to the sport. In fact, if the tour players are to be taken at their word, the majority owe their interest in golf to Tiger Woods.
Woods transcended a sport that has been around since the 15th century and made it ‘cool’. Indeed, thanks to his many jaw-dropping and spine-tingling efforts, golf has found a new legion of followers around the world. But like all good things in life, one day they must all come to an end.
At 43 years old, Tiger Woods is entering the twilight of his career and the powers that be at the PGA headquarters know as much. The question they are now asking themselves is: How do we preserve the interest in golf that Tiger has created? It’s a valid query and now is the time to act as there is still a captive audience to speak to, especially as Woods’ 2019 Masters win is still so fresh in the minds of those who follow the sport.
I can’t thank my family, friends and fans enough for their support. Having my family by my side today is something I will never forget. To not only be able to play again, but to be able to win again, is something I will forever be grateful for. This jacket sure is comfortable. pic.twitter.com/LsOUX2dWH1
— Tiger Woods (@TigerWoods) April 14, 2019
In a telling move and a sign of the changing times, the chiefs at the PGA Tour have now dropped their historical hardline against betting advertisement and now seem to be embracing it as they face a new dawn. In a change of attitude that has been coming for some time, it must be said, the PGA Tour has now admitted that sports betting is good for their game.
It’s a shrewd move by the tour and it should pay dividends in more ways than one. Naturally, the betting companies will bring in a huge amount of revenue for the tour, which will help them to continue to grow the game at the grassroots level through their various developments programmes. Crucially, it will also keep punters glued to their screens as the excitement of having a punt on the golf keeps the sport relevant.
The bottom line is the game needs to be spoken about for it to carry on growing, and once Woods goes, the conversation is in danger of dying out. Utilising the hundreds of betting markets the game of golf has is a healthy way of making sure punters still have a horse in the race which in turn creates genuine interest.
— The Open (@TheOpen) July 21, 2019
From the traditional Outright Winners to Mythical Two-Ball betting, the golf betting markets are extremely vast and let punters dictate their best bets. It’s not hard to see how this new strategy will work and really before you know it, golf is going to enjoy a second coming as far as popularity goes now that the PGA Tour have taken this decision. Golf can’t afford to hope for the best when Woods leaves and it’s encouraging to see that those in charge are taking active measures to make sure the game survives once he does.
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Overnight leader Matthew Wolff was not able to recover from a poor start.
Americans Ryan Armour and Bryson DeChambeau sit in second place.
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