The IX: Golf Thursday with Carly Grenfell, July 16, 2020

LPGA players being underestimated — LPGA stars, supporters clap back — Must-click links in women's golf

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Stop underestimating LPGA players

For better or for worse, Twitter is a powerful platform in sports. It gets many athletes in trouble, like what we’ve seen with the Eagles’ DeSean Jackson and Dwayne Wayde for outwardly supporting anti-Semitic statements and rants. But it also brings a lot of good to athletes, like the support we’ve seen for Elena Delle Donne after she was denied her medical waiver in opting out of the 2020 season. Like what it’s done to elevate the Black Lives Matter movement.

Although there is in fact good that comes from social media — I could list countless other examples, there are still always going to be haters and trolls. I probably shouldn’t be even giving them the time of day, because that’s exactly what they want. They want attention. But on the flip side, I actually think it’s important to call these folks out and 1) explain how ridiculous they are and 2) equip those of us, who love and appreciate the LPGA in every sense of the word, with statistics and hard facts that prove a point.

Let’s revisit some of the research done by Meghan MacLaren, who currently plays on the LET and is an amazing thought leader and activist within women’s golf and sport. These are some pretty remarkable statistics, but also some great insight worth sharing.

  • Jin Young Ko last year, the No. 1 player in the world, broke a 20-year old record set by Tiger Woods after going 114 straight holes without a bogey.

  • In 2019, the leading player on the PGA Tour averaged 73.06% Greens in Regulation (GIR). In 2019, 27 LPGA players averaged higher than that.

  • Have you ever thought about how opportunity creates opportunity, or how success breeds success, or how talent pushes talent? How many elite female golfers do we miss out on because they can’t see their worth?

  • Time after time, through complete silence, we’re told that our abilities and achievements as golfers don’t matter to the average golf fan. That they are less important, because they weren’t achieved by a man.

  • Ultimately, it’s about respect. That’s all.

Without further ado, I shall introduce to you the latest tweet of ridiculous tweets bashing on LPGA players: “People like watching men because they are entertained by watching something none of us could do own our own. There are thousands of men who could win weekly on the LGPA tour. Anyone with a 4 handicap would likely shoot mid 60s from forward tees.” (via some person named JPJ).

It just boggles my mind that this is the mentality of so many middle-aged men. Although he got destroyed on Twitter by many other men and women, telling him he was indeed delusional, it still frustrates me every time.

In what world would some person off the street just show up and beat a PROFESSIONAL athlete? A bigger question: is this somehow being communicated, explicitly or implicitly, that a female professional golfer is less worthy or talented than their male counterparts?

“The notion that any male with a 4 handicap could win on the LPGA not only severely underestimates the talent of women who play golf for a living, but it also grossly overestimates the proficiency of those men whose handicaps are established in a Saturday morning two-dollar Nassau.” — Ron Sirak

We do live in a world where women are still being denied participation in golf. Maybe this somewhat explains it. I came across a tweet from a former Alabama Women’s Golfer who wanted to play in the member pro at her home course. But she couldn’t—because she’s a woman. She even offered to play the same tees—still couldn’t. She’s exactly right, though. It’s 2020. It is time (way past time) for a change.

Some days are tougher than others to not be cynical. But if we aren’t being open about issues like access to golf and the ever so common mansplaining, then who will be? If we aren’t talking about it saying it’s wrong, how will we ever make it right? The answer is that we really can’t go anywhere if don’t address it.


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This Week in Women’s Golf

Reminder: First, the underlined words are the links. Second. CLICK these, even if you’ve already read them. Clicks = Attention from editors, producers and webmasters. Third, if you want to push out stuff you’ve written or read, email me! carlygrenfell@gmail.com

Cheyenne Woods is changing the game with her voice and her famous name. (via USA Today)

The calendar has cleared for another “Cup” to emerge—The Grace Cup. (via Golfweek)

LPGA rookie Haley Moore has been tearing it up on the Cactus Tour. She just won her third event after shooting a final round 62. (via Golfweek)

The Rose Ladies Series picked up some television coverage! (via Twitter)

Tournaments are not won on Twitter. Speak on it, Ron. (via LPGA.com)

Joanna Coe, PGA set to be first female to compete in the state open of Virginia. (via PGA.com)

Golf organizers fixed an oversight Wednesday by agreeing to move the pandemic-postponed Curtis Cup so that it doesn’t conflict with the Solheim Cup. (via AP)

LPGA will hold pro-ams to start and hopes to have fans on-site soon. (via Golf Digest)

Chief People Officer of the PGA, Sandy Cross, talks about the importance of having racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds at every table. (via Medium)

LPGA Tour to resume with plenty of testing and maybe some fans. (via Yahoo Sports)

LPGA partners are stepping up to help with golf’s re-start and having it be as safe as it can possibly be. (via LPGA.com)

China announced it won’t stage any international events the rest of the year, which doesn’t look good for the LPGA. (via Golf Channel)

Charley Hull is going to stay in England to target the Rose Ladies Series instead of the LPGA Tour this year. (via The Telegraph)

Buckle up. Suzann Pettersen is scheduled to tell an ‘unfiltered story’ in upcoming documentary. (via Yahoo Sports)

How Lily Muni became one of the top female golfers by age 20. (via Hong Kong Tatler)

TCU great Angela Stanford to be inducted into the Texas Golf Hall of Fame. (via SB Nation)

Chloe Garner gave up golf, then muscled her way up to the top of the Long Drive competition. (via The Score)

No Open Championship, no problem. Gemma Dryburgh made history last week at Royal St. George. (via Golf Digest)

As the LPGA restart gets closer, players are faced with some tough decisions on what events to play and which ones to sit out. (via Golfweek)

Like the PGA Tour, Whoop is providing their straps to LPGA players and caddies upon golf starting back up. (via Golf.com)


Tweet of the Week


Five at The IX: LPGA Stars, Media Clap Back

I. “Would love to take you on and give you four shots too. Serious stupid comment!!! Obviously you have no clue about the LPGA and women’s professional golf.” — Alena Sharp.

II. “Are you that guy on the range giving pointers to any female you pass? — Golf Channel’s Chantel McCabe

III. “HAHAHA okay man… I wanna see you hit 80% of your GIR, 80% of your fairways, and have a putting average of 1.75 per GIR for 25 events from 6400 yard avg. No breakfast balls bro.” — Marina Alex

IV. Golf Channels’ Randel Mell has all the facts on why “PGA Tour makes billions on TV” is a lame excuse for the disparity between the two organizations.

V. I read a lot of stupid things from idiots on twitter. But damn, this guy is now at the top of the list. JPJ — please take up bowling. You’re an embarrassment to the game.” — Golf Channel’s Lisa Cornwell


Mondays: Soccer
By: Annie Peterson, @AnnieMPeterson AP Women’s Soccer
Tuesdays: Tennis
By Joey Dillon, @JoeyDillon  Freelance Tennis Writer
Wednesdays: Basketball
By: Howard Megdal, @HowardMegdal The Next
Thursdays: Golf
By Carly Grenfell, @Carlygren PGA.com
Fridays: Hockey
By: Erica Ayala, @ELindsay08 NWHL Broadcaster

Written by The IX Team