As Tiger comes back from his surgery and the recovery related delay to play the US Open this week there is much talk of whether he's rusty or not. Strange term to use after he has presumably had the "rust" removed from the hinge that is his left knee.
Not many are convinced that it will provide any competitive advantage to the others in the tournament. Tiger has played sick, tired, distracted and injured before and still won. Maybe harder for him and closer for the others, but he's still able to pull it out through sheer strength of will. His mental toughness is formidable under pressure.
That's probably the golf and business lesson for all of us. After any setback or prolonged absence it is important to re-focus and concentrate on the fundamentals to achieve our goals. Keep it simple, ignore the obstacles, and go for it.
A great demonstration of focus and commitment against all odds, Mike Weir defeated Tiger Woods in a face to face battle yesterday at Royal Montreal on the final day of the President's Cup.
All the pressure of high expectations for Canada's No.1 golfer against the toughest competitor in the world who's been having a great year while Mike has been struggling to win anywhere. After leading 3-up then bouncing one into the water after two birdies by Tiger he was 1-down with three holes to play. He won two of them for the match.
Guts and skill. All you need to win in business and in golf.
Way to go, Mike!
In one respect business is not like golf, and that is the element of teamwork. Golf is normally a very solitary endeavor, just one golfer against the course and all other competitors. Very much alone, 100% responsible for the results, no one else to share the credit or take the blame.
But occasionally golf is also a team sport. Typically in college golf, but more notably in the famous Ryder Cup and the President's Cup, which is currently taking place in Montreal. Yesterday was a match of two-on-two with the alternate ball format. That means I drive it off the tee into the rough, you hit it back on the fairway, I hit it back in the rough, you hit it on the green and I miss the putt. And so on.
That was pretty much the way it went yesterday for Tiger Woods and his partner Charles Howell III. Charles had hit one wide of the green into deep rough behind a large sand trap with very little green in front of the hole. Tiger slashed it out with typical finesse, flying high over the trap, landed softly on the fringe and rolled gently to within two feet. Charles stepped up and missed the putt! That's hard on team spirit.
Nevertheless, they persevered and won their match. As Tiger said, "What matters is that we got the job done."
Meanwhile Mike Weir and VJ Singh had a different team experience. Both had been playing well and were holding a slim lead. But Mike hit his approach shot to the green slightly left and it landed in the sand trap. No problem, VJ hit a perfect shot out of the sand, onto the green and into the hole!
Ah the joys of successful teamwork.