You see major golf tournaments on TV, and you’ll see galleries six, seven fans deep, each clamoring for some kind of personal connection with the player. What you might not realize is, if you head to almost any other golf tournament and find pretty much any golfer outside the top 20, you’re just about going to have a personal audience with the player.
Our scene: the final round of the Czech Masters. Eddie Pepperell, best known to American audiences as the dude who made a run at this year’s British Open while hung over, had a fan following him around, applauding every play. And here’s what happened next:
“He told me my ball hit a sprinkler on the last and kicked on and he gave me a clap for my shot,” Pepperell said. “He was the only one I heard clapping so I said, ‘Here you go, you can have my lob wedge.’”
Pepperell finished the event T9 — and with only 13 clubs — but made himself a lifelong fan. That right there is how you grow the game … though, granted, there are limits.
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