Imagine Golf Blogs

Are Golf Fans Sane?

The football season is upon us, but golf still rules, OK?

Posted Aug 14, 2009 by Chris Stewart

As the start of a new football season threatens to overwhelm us in a tsunami of hype, it's worth asking the question: are football supporters more more passionate than golf fans? Admittedly, the latter are unlikely to spend their teenage years running with a local gang of golf hooligans; and few seem to have tattoos done as a mark of loyalty to their favourite golfer - except Seve Ballesteros, of course, who has a tattoo of himself on his arm. They don't spend hours making up songs about their favourite players, either. Yet there is something about followers of golf that borders on the fanatic.

No self-respecting football fan would dare to turn up for a match without their replica shirt, but golf fans go way further, turning up for events dressed exactly the same as the competitors. How many people wearing moulded studs do you see in the stands of your local football club? Can you imagine anyone turning up at a game of cricket in full whites? Perhaps they think if a golfer has to drop out at the last minute a tournament organiser will call up a spectator, so long as they're wearing the right gear. For all we know they could  also have their clubs in the boot of their car. Just in case.

Anyone who’s ever been hit by a golf ball will tell you the same thing – it hurts. But for the paying customer at The Open Championsip or The Masters, it represents a badge of honour. If Tiger Woods ploughs a wayward drive into a cluster of disciples, he need not worry. Rather than being confronted by an angry fan and a potential lawsuit, he is more likely to come across a grinning and heavily-bleeding spectator, only too happy to be touched, albeit indirectly, by the hand of greatness.

And what does the concussed fan accept as a way of compensation? A signed copy of the ball that felled them, which will probably take pride of place in their home, as a permanent reminder of the time they could have been killed by the greatest player the game has ever seen.

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