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Steve Okula

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #50 on: March 16, 2008, 04:23:32 PM »
You're talking hearsay, or bullshit. Same thing..

it's not b.s. and it's not hearsay and almost all of it is in the public record.  but apparently you feel your ignorance entitles you to be unpleasant.  since you've cursed your own darkness, I'll leave it to you to light your own candle. 

Apparently you're incapable of anything but personal slander.

You avoided my question. What did you hear about Player and from whom?
The small wheel turns by the fire and rod,
the big wheel turns by the grace of God.

Adrian_Stiff

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #51 on: March 16, 2008, 04:44:37 PM »
The accusation of GP cheating on 17 at Lytham in the 74 Open does not seem fair or logical really, he was 6 strokes ahead, so was hardly going to lose, also if his caddie did drop a ball it was hardly GP cheating, as far as i remember he asked the crowd to help him search.
A combination of whats good for golf and good for turf.
The Players Club, Cumberwell Park, The Kendleshire, Oake Manor, Dainton Park, Forest Hills, Erlestoke, St Cleres.
www.theplayersgolfclub.com

Mark Pearce

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #52 on: March 16, 2008, 04:55:48 PM »
You're talking hearsay, or bullshit. Same thing..

it's not b.s. and it's not hearsay and almost all of it is in the public record.  but apparently you feel your ignorance entitles you to be unpleasant.  since you've cursed your own darkness, I'll leave it to you to light your own candle. 
I don't want to get involved in your personal bitch slapping but I have to point out that it clearly IS hearsay, whether true or not, as hearsay is defined.

Chris Cupit

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #53 on: March 16, 2008, 06:32:36 PM »

as a matter of fact, the negative things I heard people on the tour say about Player had nothing to do with apartheid or even his being a foreigner, but you can guess at them pretty easily since they've been hashed around a fair amount over his career.  are they true?  I honestly really don't know.


I can't guess at them. What are they and who said them and where did you hear of them and from whom?

Things you "heard people on the tour say"?

You're talking hearsay, or bullshit. Same thing..

Cheating.

Has dogged him for years, 2 instances with which I'm aware. The first with respect to the 1974 Open. Never substantiated but certainly the accusation, though whispered, has followed Player around for decades. Something to the effect of his caddy dropping a ball down his pant leg on the 71st hole. Sad, actually. That a man who has promoted, respected and loved the game as Player has for, what, 6-7 decades, is on the receiving end of the worst rumor in golf: cheating. The second came courtesy of Tom Watson as a Skins game in the early 80's. Apparently Player pulled out a fairway wood, addressed the ball, then switched to an irons, thus making his shot easier out of the rough.

Is there substance to these rumors? I've no clue as I was not at either place. Are we, as a society, more apt to blame a "foreigner" than one of our own? Probably, and that cuts both ways.

All I can do, like others on this site, is go by my personal interaction with the man. I found him, at all times, to be kind, benevolent of time and self, gracious and a gentleman.



David,

In the Skins instance I believe it was an issue involving removal of a loose impediment but the terse exchange between Watson and Player was caught on tape and Watson did allude to something about Gary having "done this stuff for years".  I think it was the 1983 Skins game.

Right after that incident Golf Digest (maybe Golf Magazine??) did an article on the issue and they tried to split the baby in half so to speak regarding taking sides and described Tom Watson's view of the rules as akin to them being the Ten Commandments that are inviolate and Gary Player's view which they likened to the Bill of Rights where a player should assert his "rights". 

I have met Mr. Player once and it was a thrill but the only golf course I've played of his (The Old Brookfield West Club in Atlanta) was truly awful.

Ray Tennenbaum

Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #54 on: March 16, 2008, 06:33:59 PM »
The second came courtesy of Tom Watson as a Skins game in the early 80's. Apparently Player pulled out a fairway wood, addressed the ball, then switched to an irons, thus making his shot easier out of the rough.

the Skins Game episode was emphatically not about soling a wood club behind the ball.  Watson said he saw Player remove a rooted leaf behind his ball.  is that hearsay or eyewitness testimony?

as far as that particular episode goes, whether or not Watson had a point or a case, that Player took it upon himself to counteraccuse Watson, in a stretch, reflected poorly on his character. my opinion.  that's not hearsay either, and I've reached my bait quotient.

Ray Tennenbaum

Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #55 on: March 16, 2008, 06:42:21 PM »
Gentlemen,

I stand corrected with respect to the 1983 Skins game. Apologies for getting it wrong. And I'm certainly not trying to "bait" anyone so if you took offense, I apologize.

I was a little hot, but the bait remark wasn't intended for you, David.  so you can keep your apology for sometime when you need it (or can loan it to me)

Steve Okula

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #56 on: March 17, 2008, 05:21:18 AM »
So to summarize the case against Gary Player,

There are accusations of cheating once in a British Open, with no evidence at all, nor, with a six shot lead, any motive.

There is a dispute between two players, the only two witnesses, regarding an alleged rules infraction. There was no official decision on the matter to say the infraction had occured. It was one man's word against the other.

Tom Watson says, "You've been doing this stuff for years.", and this is admitted as evidence pointing towards Player's guilt.

What was Player's counter-accusation against Watson that reflects poorly on his character?

Now the people on the Tour who tell stories about Player's misdeeds are two, Calcavecchia and Watson.

This is character assassination through rumor and insinuation, which in my opinion reveals poor judgement and a flawed morality.

The small wheel turns by the fire and rod,
the big wheel turns by the grace of God.

Lou_Duran

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #57 on: March 17, 2008, 02:17:15 PM »
The following is a link to an interesting interview with Gary Player.

http://www.golfonline.com/golfonline/features/kessler/columnist/0,17742,468531,00.html

I had forgotten about the Tom Watson incident.  That Tom would raise such a stink about removing an allegedly not-loose impediment (what is a rooted leave?  I thought leaves decomposed, not rooted) at a skins game is a bit peculiar, if not a fairly obvious sign of an extreme competitive streak that could perhaps cloud over otherwise sound judgement.  I also have considerable admiration for Watson, a fierce competitior, and a man also known to have strong beliefs and opinions who does not keep them close to his vest.

Player provides interesting opinions regarding gca in this interview.  I can see how his work may not be well received on this site, though his thinking regarding technology and the ruling bodies' inaction is right down the line of charm here.

PThomas

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #58 on: March 17, 2008, 02:51:24 PM »
fwiw, Watson confronted Player about his alleged violation after the round, not immediately after it occurred...at that point in time it was too late to do anything about it
197 played, only 3 to go!!

Chris Cupit

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #59 on: March 17, 2008, 06:51:32 PM »
So to summarize the case against Gary Player,

There are accusations of cheating once in a British Open, with no evidence at all, nor, with a six shot lead, any motive.

There is a dispute between two players, the only two witnesses, regarding an alleged rules infraction. There was no official decision on the matter to say the infraction had occured. It was one man's word against the other.

Tom Watson says, "You've been doing this stuff for years.", and this is admitted as evidence pointing towards Player's guilt.

What was Player's counter-accusation against Watson that reflects poorly on his character?

Now the people on the Tour who tell stories about Player's misdeeds are two, Calcavecchia and Watson.

This is character assassination through rumor and insinuation, which in my opinion reveals poor judgement and a flawed morality.



Steve,

It is not rumor or insinuation to state that Tom Watson formally accused Gary Player of knowingly violating a rule.  That happened.  It is a fact and was widely reported at the time.

I found some interesting articles all from reputable sources and writers.  One in fact supports Gary Player and confirms that more than one person was there and at least one other person claims to have seen the lie of the ball and feels Gary got a raw deal. 

But, Tom did not back down and continued his accusation the next day with the referee Joe Dey.

Gary "responded" years later in a book by suggesting at least some of Watson's major wins were with wedges that had illegal grooves.  More recently, Player also chimed in and claimed current golfers have used steroids to aid their games.

Below are the three different articles:
(BTW my pointin all of this is to defend myself and others like me who have been accused of character assasination through rumour and innuendo.  I have not said whether I believe Tom or Gary only that it was a legitimate issue and was brought up by a respected champion of the game and widely reported on):

"(David) Abell...soon settled into life away from competition as director of golf at Gary Player CC in Sun City. He found himself a witness to controversy as Player's caddie in the inaugural Skins Game in 1983. Tom Watson accused Player of having attempted to reposition a "growing live weed root" next to his ball prior to playing a pivotal chip shot on the 16th hole. Player claimed he hadn't broken a rule.
"I've always thought Watson was wrong, that Gary was wrongly accused of cheating," says Abell. "I got to the ball first, and Gary asked me, 'What kind of lie do I have?' I said, 'You've got the perfect lie to hit the shot you need.' The ball was sitting on a patch of clover. It was sitting way up. Watson was totally off-base in this instance."

Golf Digest interview

"Even golf -- golf??? -- is being dragged into the steroid debate. Last week, nine-time major champion Gary Player claimed he had been told by a fellow player that he had taken steroids and knew of at least 10 other players who had done the same thing. Player claimed he had been sworn to secrecy by the player which means, if he agreed to stay silent, he should have kept his big mouth shut. Now, by not naming the player and alleging there are at least 10 others, he casts doubt on just about everyone playing on the PGA Tour.
Player should either have named a name or said nothing. The irony in this is not lost on most players on tour: Tom Watson once accused Player -- to his face -- of being a cheat.

John Feinstein
Special to the Washington Post

"We have this column from Dave Anderson of the Times about a cheating scandal at the Skins Game," he said, not sounding especially imbued by Thanksgiving weekend spirit. "Know anything about it?" I knew nothing and suggested to my boss that he print Anderson's piece next to my rather lame epistle about birdies and bogeys. I then hung up and phoned Dave's room. "I have indigestion, and it wasn't the burrito," I said. "I just lucked into it," Anderson said, almost apologetically. "I didn't even tell Radosta."

Now, understand that getting scooped at a Skins Game wouldn't normally rank among one's greatest career fears, but at least my misery was accompanied. "I got one of those Monday-morning wake-up calls, too," said Jenkins, on assignment for Sports Illustrated. "Dave also got me." But such is the essence of Anderson's genius. Without pounding his fist, hosting his own radio program or blogging 24/7, Anderson does it the old-fashioned way. He goes the extra mile for a story, although his Skins Game trip was a short one along a dirt road. "I wanted to find Player after it was over," Anderson recalled. "I turned a corner, and there was Watson saying, 'I'm accusing you, Gary. You can't do that. I'm tired of this. I wasn't watching you, but I saw it.' "

Alas, Watson thought Player had removed a rooted leaf resting against his ball on the 16th hole at Desert Highlands. Player made par there for a halve, then birdied the 17th for a carryover jackpot of $ 150,000. Player insisted "the piece of grass stayed where it was" after he investigated to see if it was a loose impediment. "When they saw me, they weren't too thrilled," Anderson went on. "I remember Tom saying something like, 'Dave, you're not going to write this, are you?' I told him that was my job."

Anderson's bombshell created quite a stir around the sports world, and when Watson was contacted the next day by a wire service, he did not back down. He expanded on his complaint lodged with Joe Dey, the referee at the match, and reiterated his belief that Player knowingly had violated a rule. Subsequently, Player wrote a book in which he branded Watson "too dour" and alleged that Watson won a couple majors with illegal clubs.

Bob Verdi
Golf Digest


Bob_Huntley

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #60 on: March 17, 2008, 07:20:40 PM »
Which is the greater infraction of the rules, cheating at golf or on your wife?


Bob

Lou_Duran

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #61 on: March 17, 2008, 08:25:10 PM »
Infractions?  Why, if you're of the correct persuasion, fidelity to one's wife is but a sign of possessing a dull mind, having diminished capacity, and being vulgarly ordinary.   And what's wrong with a mulligan or three or five.  Who's keeping score anyways?  Only the same dull, anally retentive, pencil and card types bent on shoving their Victorian morality down great men's throats.  Process and means be damned!  We go around but once.  OR NOT!  ;)

As much as I like Tom Watson, I have to wonder why he chose to wait until the issue was moot and then to prosecute it so forcefully.  Watson is a rules expert- he wrote a book about them- and certainly knew that if an infraction of the rules occured,  he had a duty to call it immediately.  That he didn't, then raised such a stink only after he saw that it may have benefited his opponent a hole or two later, says a whole lot more about Watson than Player.  By failing to protect the field, didn't Watson in effect cheat in this instance?
« Last Edit: March 17, 2008, 08:26:59 PM by Lou_Duran »

mike_beene

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #62 on: March 17, 2008, 08:59:44 PM »
Perhaps two respectable people saw something differently.Perhaps someone acted wrong.We all have and are left to rank and compare sins and justify them.I am the worst offender many days. We judge others by their actions and ourselves by our intentions.

PThomas

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #63 on: March 17, 2008, 09:19:57 PM »
the irons Watson used to win the 77 Masters and British were later found to be non-conforming/illegal
197 played, only 3 to go!!

Lou_Duran

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #64 on: March 17, 2008, 11:31:56 PM »
"We judge others by their actions and ourselves by our intentions."  Mike Beene.

I need to give this some thought.  Human nature is such that we tend to give ourselves the benefit of the doubt, while assigning dark motives to the actions of others, particularly those whom we don't like or diasgree with.

If someone wishes to answer the following questions, I'd appreciate it:

Is failure to call an observed rules violation on a timely manner considered cheating under the rules of golf?

Is there a duty to protect the field by calling said violation?

If there is and for whatever reason the observing party fails to do so, but later discloses that a violation occured, what if any are the ramnifications?

Jim Nugent

Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #65 on: March 17, 2008, 11:53:30 PM »
the irons Watson used to win the 77 Masters and British were later found to be non-conforming/illegal

Can you give me any sources for that?  I'd like to learn more.  Thanks...

PThomas

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #66 on: March 18, 2008, 12:08:43 AM »
the irons Watson used to win the 77 Masters and British were later found to be non-conforming/illegal

Can you give me any sources for that?  I'd like to learn more.  Thanks...

a well-documented affair Jim, i remember (i'm showing my age here!)

see Players Book To Be the Best, page 32, or Mccormacks's 1978 annual
197 played, only 3 to go!!

Andrew Mitchell

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #67 on: March 18, 2008, 08:46:50 AM »
the irons Watson used to win the 77 Masters and British were later found to be non-conforming/illegal

Can you give me any sources for that?  I'd like to learn more.  Thanks...

a well-documented affair Jim, i remember (i'm showing my age here!)

see Players Book To Be the Best, page 32, or Mccormacks's 1978 annual

I'm of an age to remember that  :( but that's all news to me.  Imagine the media outcry if that were to happen today.  Presumably Watson suffered no penalty despite winning two majors with non conforming clubs?
2014 to date: not actually played anywhere yet!
Still to come: Hollins Hall; Ripon City; Shipley; Perranporth; St Enodoc

PThomas

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #68 on: March 18, 2008, 09:44:50 AM »
the irons Watson used to win the 77 Masters and British were later found to be non-conforming/illegal

Can you give me any sources for that?  I'd like to learn more.  Thanks...

a well-documented affair Jim, i remember (i'm showing my age here!)

see Players Book To Be the Best, page 32, or Mccormacks's 1978 annual

I'm of an age to remember that  :( but that's all news to me.  Imagine the media outcry if that were to happen today.  Presumably Watson suffered no penalty despite winning two majors with non conforming clubs?

correct Andrew , nothing happened to Watson

basically, right near the time of the PGA that year, another player - can't remember the names - said to another, i think they were kidding around - "nice clubs, too bad they are illegal....well, that player didn't know any better, went and had his grooves checkec - and they were illegal!...this prompted others too have their clubs checked and some like Watson's were found to be nonconforming
197 played, only 3 to go!!

Jim Nugent

Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #69 on: March 20, 2008, 09:02:22 AM »
the irons Watson used to win the 77 Masters and British were later found to be non-conforming/illegal

Can you give me any sources for that?  I'd like to learn more.  Thanks...

a well-documented affair Jim, i remember (i'm showing my age here!)

see Players Book To Be the Best, page 32, or Mccormacks's 1978 annual

I've checked online and haven't found even a sliver of a hint that Watson played with non-conforming clubs.  Closest I saw was an article that said Watson never played with square grooves in his life. 

Afraid I don't really have access the books you brought up.  Player's charge has the ring of a grudge to it: his book wasn't published till 1991, 14 years after the alleged violation. 

Again, I would love to see exactly what Player and/or McCormack said about this, and also anyone else who knows about it. 

PThomas

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #70 on: March 20, 2008, 07:47:02 PM »
Jim, I'm not making this stuff up...i just googled "Tom Watson's illegal 1977 clubs" and 2 headlines were on the first page of results

from the McCormack annual, page 60:

"..a controversy that surfaced at the Hartford Open the week before [the PGA].During a  practice round at Hartford, Jerry heard examine dthe clubs of George Burns..."Nice clubs you have there George, too bad they'e illegal"

Heard had no way of know ing whetehr or not Burns' clubs were illegal, nor did it seem as if he weren't just needling Burns.   But just in case,Burns asked Deputy commissione rClyde Mangum to inspect them...and indeed Burns' irons were illegal...

So as the players arrived for the PGA thier clubs underwent inspection -- and were rejected in wholesale lots..Tom Watson lost all of his..and Gary Player had to change half of the irons in his bag...

Watson had won the Masters and British Open using the clubs found with illegal grooves...
197 played, only 3 to go!!


Padraig Dooley

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #72 on: March 20, 2008, 08:45:20 PM »
The Gary Player courses that I've played are
Roodepoort CC, nothing special,
Erinvale, quite good,
The two Sun City courses, Gary Player CC which is loved by a lot of good players, long, tight and difficult but I've not a fan of, as it lacks variety, The Lost City CC which is more interesting but not rated as highly as it's neighbour,
Leopard Creek, which if you can take your eyes away from the wildlife and scenery is probably my favourite course in Africa.

His courses that I've played have been of a reasonably high standard.

As for his attitude he is single minded, determined, has strong opinions and likes to express them. He always likes to look after number 1 as well.
There are painters who transform the sun to a yellow spot, but there are others who with the help of their art and their intelligence, transform a yellow spot into the sun.
  - Pablo Picasso

Lou_Duran

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #73 on: March 20, 2008, 10:21:27 PM »
Padraig,

What do you hear of Elephant Hills just outside of Victorial Falls?  It looked like it could have some character.

Padraig Dooley

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Re: Gary Player: Bad Attitude=Bad courses?
« Reply #74 on: March 21, 2008, 08:37:31 AM »
Lou

Was there not too long ago, just posted some pictures.

There are painters who transform the sun to a yellow spot, but there are others who with the help of their art and their intelligence, transform a yellow spot into the sun.
  - Pablo Picasso

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