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Golf Australia Express : GA Express 271
THE VIEW The Big Q HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE GAME YOU LOVE THIS WEEK'S POLL WHAT'S YOUR VIEW? Want to get something off your chest, email us at email@example.com LAST POLL RESULTS 83% YES 17% WAS 2017 A THRILLING YEAR IN THE WORLD OF GOLF? NO SILVER BULLET FOR GOLF'S IMAGE PROBLEM F OR those of us who love the game it’s a positon that’s difficult to comprehend but apparently 70 per cent of Brits believe golf is the single most boring sport to watch. The game was a clear ‘winner’ among 1,616 people who took part in a YouGov survey last week, handily beating American Football into second place. Athletics was deemed the most exciting sport followed closely by tennis with gymnastics third, according to the results. While the merits or otherwise of the survey can likely be questioned the perception of golf as boring, whether it be playing or watching, is a reality and one that is a serious problem for golf. Whether or not people enjoy watching golf on television is neither here nor there. I play every week with regular golfers who would likely not recognise Jordan Spieth if he joined the group. But the survey results confirm something about golf that many in the industry already know: the game has an image problem. Ask someone who doesn’t play to offer three words to describe golf and it’s almost guaranteed ‘boring’ will be one of them. Now, golf isn’t everybody’s cup of tea and even many golfers find watching the game on television less than captivating. But one of the unfortunate consequences of that is that an awful lot of people who might otherwise enjoy the game never even try it. Golf faces any number of issues to remain relevant in a world that seems to move ever faster but its inherent challenge isn’t one of them. For all the improvements in clubs, balls and courses I’m yet to meet anyone who has quit the game because it is too easy. Conversely, I have met countless people who have discovered golf later in life and not only become obsessed by it but lamented the fact they weren’t introduced to it, or didn’t take it up, sooner in life. The casual fan’s lack of interest in golf on television is really just a symptom of a wider problem, one with no ‘silver bullet’ that will fix things overnight. However, as golfers I feel we can have some impact by doing our bit to share the things that are good about golf. This doesn’t mean boring people to death at social gatherings extolling the game’s virtues (and let’s be honest, we’ve all been guilty of this). Rather, it means encouraging interest where it might be shown and being open to introducing new people to the game. If every golfer in Australia brought one new person to the game each year it would make a contribution far greater than any (boring) televised golf tournament. E ROD MORRI is an award-winning writer and podcast presenter. He hosts The iseekgolf.com Podcast weekly. CLICK here to listen. NO
50 Favourite Aust Golf Courses 2017
GA Express 272