You Can Understand...

From the The Advertiser, file this one under: The same kind of spoiled mindset that ruined pro tennis.

If I knew how, I'd set this post to Schubert's Sting Quartet No. 4 (more maudlin the better):

Tiger Woods, ranked world No.1, Phil Mickelson (No.4) and Retief Goosen (No.5) have turned their backs on the $7.39 million tournament starting on Thursday at the Kapalua Plantation resort course on the island of Maui. The star trio have chosen to stay at home with their families rather than fight for the $1.48 million first prize. Only 28 players will tee off in the tournament featuring the winners from the 2005 US Tour.

"You can understand why guys who are married and have families would rather stay at home at this time of the year," Lonard said.

Oh sure, we can understand staying at home this time of year, when the kids head back to school and dad would have to go to dreary old Hawaii to pick up a guaranteed check that, I grant you, probably only covers a 20 hours on NetJets, but still isn't too shabby. 

"It's their decision and I support them though if they want to go, they go and if they don't, they stay at home.

I'm sure there is some deeper meaning in that statement.

[Michael] Campbell said he was also tempted to remain in Sydney with his young family. "I'm not surprised guys like Tiger, Phil and Retief are not competing this week," he said.

"Obviously the sponsors are pretty disappointed but Phil's got a young family, so has Retief. I don't think Tiger has ever missed the Mercedes since first contesting the event in 1998 so you really can't begrudge him from electing not to play."  

What's going to be Phil's excuse when the kids grow up?

Seriously, I know Campbell and Lonard are in a no-win situation here. If they blast the big names for not showing, it only causes headaches they don't need. But the whole family excuse is getting old (I suspect the Commissioner agrees).

Let's face it, they make a lot of money and only care about the majors, so there is no incentive for them to go to Kapalua. Plus, Phil doesn't like Bermuda greens. Tiger is on vacation. Retief lives too far away.

But spending more time with their family as the excuse for skipping Kapalua. Not buying it.