On the Monday of Masters week, with traffic heavy on Magnolia Lane, Cathal Kelly of the Globe and Mail decides that he’s going to write a column about the attention still being paid to the injured Tiger Woods by putting the spotlight on Tiger Woods, who announced last week he won’t be playing at Augusta National. According to Kelly, it’s the fans who are the enablers, not writers who overlook who’s actually in the field and cash in on Woods’ name by writing that it’s time for him to give up right out of the gate at Augusta. Kelly defends his reason for the column by writing “If it had been about any of golf’s current stars – Jason Day, Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy, Harvey Shank – you wouldn’t have gotten past the headline. Did you catch that? Though I wish it were so for poetic reasons, Harvey Shank is not a golfer. He’s a guy who pitched (poorly) for the California Angels in the 1970s. But you were so concentrated on Tiger Woods, you slid right by that.” Give them credit, oh great, wise one. Fans, even casual ones, might not know Harvey Shank’s real occupation, but they would know he’s not a golfer and they may read a story on Day, Spieth or McIlroy if it was well done, but it’s unlikely that a Cathal Kelly byline would have lured them in, which explains why he’s exploiting what he sees as a problem to get eyes on his verbiage … In Kelly’s defence, there was a time when Tiger’s presence was overshadowing those coming behind him, but he was playing at the time. Spieth and Day, in particular, have recently emerged and hit new heights of popularity, which McIlroy already had, among fans, but few actually want Woods to retire … Many thanks to Sandra Post for paying tribute to Wally Crouter, who passed away on March 28 at the age of 92. As she pointed out in here comment, Crouter, before his retirement in 1996, was the guy Toronto tuned into on CFRB 1010, but he was also the voice of golf enthusiasts in the area. He was also the 2012 winner of the Lorne Rubenstein Award presented annually to a media member who has made major contributions to golf in Ontario. An avid golfer, Crouter is credited in raising millions for charity over the years, including fundraising golf tournaments … Brooke Henderson is now sixth on the LPGA Tour’s money list with $342,888 in seven events. She’s also fourth in scoring average at 69.679 and in overall birdies with 122 … Maude-Aimee Leblanc of Sherbrooke, Que., is second in average driving distance at 283.333 yards … I miss Lydia Ko’s glasses … I saw one comment on Twitter that boldly stated that the Drive, Chip and Putt contest at Augusta National “showcases the game worldwide” via the Golf Channel. It should be clarified that while it might have put a lot of eyes on the kids’ skills competition, it should be remembered that the Golf Channel is a specialty channel and those eyes were likely those of established golfers, so it was more a case of preaching to the converted than growing the game … My old Toronto Sun colleague Steve Simmons went overboard when he described Mike Weir as a “media-hater” in noting that Weir will do some television analysis when he isn’t playing at Augusta this week. Granted, Weir isn’t the most verbose guy, often uncomfortable in the spotlight, but never a jerk and most times accessible and accommodating … Interesting to see the Toronto Star, which considers itself a champion of women’s issues, give just a brief mention to the finale of the ANA Inspiration on Monday. There was a time when the Star would have had a reporter on site at that event. It will also be interesting to see how much coverage it gives the Masters this week … I covered a Grey Cup in Regina 20 years ago and I’m all for the Prairie city getting the CP Women’s Open in 2018 for no other reason than the appreciation factor for such an event …Albin Choi, Brad Fritsch, Mackenzie Hughes, Taylor Pendrith, Ben Silverman, Adam Svensson and Ryan Yip are the Canadians in the field at the Web .com Tour’s Servientrega Championship in Cartegena, Colombia. Roger Sloan of Merritt, B.C., is listed as an alternate … The Champions Tour is idle this week as is the LPGA Tour after its first major of the season concluded on the weekend … The Symetra Tour, the LPGA’s main development circuit, swings back into action as Sue Kim of Langley, B.C., returns to Florida’s Natural Charity Classic to defend her 2015 championship. Joining Kim in the field will be Jennifer Kirby, Rebecca Lee-Bentham, Brittany Marchand, Brogan McKinnon, Megan Osland, Samantha Richdale, Augusta James, Anne-Catherine Tanguay, Jessica Wallace, Sara-Maude Juneau and LPGA Tour veteran Lorie Kane. After playing in Lake Wales, James will defend her 2015 championship at Chico’s Patty Berg Memorial the following week in Fort Myers … Apparently, the early openings of golf courses across the country will not cut into the time that people in the golf industry spend watching this week’s Masters. This week’s GNN Poll asked readers if they would see less of Augusta this week, but 79 per cent had said no and 21 per cent had said yes as this was written.
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