I have a confession to make and, apparently, it’s going to shock a lot of people.
I nominated Mike Weir for induction into the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame and had that seconded by a person who shall remain nameless unless he wants to make himself known.
Those who read my Wednesday blog predicting that Weir would be named to the hall of fame might suspect that I knew something beforehand, but the truth is, I didn’t know for sure until yesterday, like everybody else. Weir’s record made it a pretty safe hunch.
Normally, I wouldn’t even mention this fact. The announcement that somebody is going into a hall of fame is an event that belongs to the inductee, while the nominator should be off in the shadows just enjoying the satisfaction that something he believed in just came true.
It seemed like such a slam-dunk last summer when the nomination first came to mind, an induction that would thrill the legions of Weir fans, not only in his home province, but around the country.
Since then, however, fellow blogsters Robert Thompson and Bob Weeks have taken issue with the induction for two reasons, one being that it comes too early for Weir. Both have also suggested that this is some sort of capitalist plot to market the 100th playing of the Canadian Open.
Let’s go with the first one to start. There is no age limit for somebody to be inducted into the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame. Where is it written that you have to be eligible for your pension in order to be inducted? It’s good for the game to have a hall of famer still active and vibrant as Weir is and will be for some time.
Unlike other sports, golf is a game that you can play at a high level well into your 50s on a circuit such as the Champions Tour, so when is the best time to put a player into the Hall of Fame? Let them enjoy it in their primes if they deserve it.
Merit is the only reason for being inducted into a hall of fame and, oddly enough, both Weeks and Thompson agree that Weir is a shoo-in with what he’s accomplished already.
Has anyone noticed a fellow named Vijay Singh on the PGA Tour? He went into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2006 at the age of 43, which is four years older than Weir will be when he’s inducted.
There are also several examples of LPGA Tour players being inducted in the prime of their careers at much younger ages than Weir’s 38 years.
Does anyone remember an outstanding amateur player named Marlene Streit, who just happens to be the first Canadian inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame? Long before that happened, she was in the first class of inductees into the Canadian hall in 1971 at the age of 37 and played plenty of fine golf after that.
As for the capitalist scheme to market the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame and the RBC Canadian Open, rest assured that there was no pressure from any corporation, tournament organizer or the boogie man to start the proceedings.
Marketing isn’t my job, but the timing of Weir’s induction seemed perfect if he made it in 2009, but even next year at St. George’s Golf and Country Club in Toronto.
If Weir’s induction is held at Glen Abbey, it is convenient for his family and the people back home in Bright’s Grove/Sarnia to be on hand. It’s also good for fans to be on hand for the induction of their favourite golfer in his home province and his fellow tour players are around.
The stars aligned on this one, especially with the Open being played for the 100th time and the hall right there on the Glen Abbey grounds. Sure, I thought of all of those things, but it wasn’t done for the cynical reasons suggested.
It was done for fun and all the right reasons – to honour a guy we all know is destined for the hall of fame, whether he’s 38 or 68.