Former world number one Adam Scott is one of my favourite golfers.
But the Australian’s comments last month on golf’s re-inclusion in the Olympics were ridiculous and really sad.
The International Olympic Committee’s decision to reinstate golf was met with almost unanimous approval so it disappointed me greatly when Scott said he is not planning his schedule around the competition in Rio next year. I was absolutely devastated when Scott admitted he considers golf in the Olympics as nothing more than “an exhibition event”.
It was a stupid, disappointing comment from a multi-millionaire. Even if Scott truly believes that, he should have kept his thoughts to himself. He was too honest and didn’t think about other people’s feelings.
There are a lot of people who would give their right arm to compete in the Olympics and to be in with a chance of winning a gold medal. There are many sports, including squash and karate, that are fighting to get into the Olympics, so it is disappointing when you hear other sportsmen aren’t passionate about it.
Scott’s opinion doesn’t look reflect well on him and, if anything, makes the powers at be at the IOC look a little silly. They voted in golf, having obviously fallen for the commercial aspect of the sport, and could now have people competing in the competition who think it is just an exhibition event. If all the other top golfers share the same opinion as Scott, then it begs the question, why is golf an Olympic sport?
I totally understand that the Majors are the biggest focus in golf and Scott wants to win as many of them as he possibly can.
It is great that he is more bothered about winning Majors than making money. They are the things he wants to be remembered for as a golf player and I respect his ambition, but the Olympics should be the pinnacle for an athlete.
Just look at what winning Olympic gold in London three years ago did for Andy Murray’s career.
He used that as a springboard to win Majors and went on to lift the US Open and Wimbledon titles.
All the top players in tennis reached the latter stages of the singles and doubles events so the Olympics has become a big thing in that sport.
It might take golf a few cycles to realise how big the Olympics is and I hope, despite Scott’s comments, that with time they will embrace it.