Dear Sir Nicholas:
First of all, I’d like to thank you for all you have done for the game of golf. Throughout your playing career (which should not be over – more on that in a moment), you have won 40 professional tournaments between the PGA Tour, European Tour and Champions Tour, and 6 Major Championships. Not to mention you are the most successful Ryder Cup player ever.
You have also greatly contributed to the advancement of the game with your insightful and easily understood break down of the game, working as an analyst for CBS Sports. One of my favorite parts of watching the game on TV is listening to your thoughtful commentary and insight.
Every time you are on TV, however, I can’t help but think about how you are relatively young for the Champions Tour and how you should still be competing, at least some of the time. At the age of 54, you can still play and you can still win.
I get it – throughout your career you never made the PGA Tour a priority, winning 9 events on Tour compared to your 30 wins on the European Tour. Obviously you made the Major Championships a priority, winning three Green Jackets and three Open Championships. If you made the Champions Tour a priority, I can only imagine how many more victories (and Major Championships) you’d add to your illustrious resume.
I read somewhere that you were once quoted as saying your putting game has left you. I find it hard to believe that if you wanted to, you could not putt like a champion again. After all, a quick glance at your website shows me that you are a man who puts his mind to something and makes it happen.
Faldo Enterprises is very impressive, and I do not doubt that you are quite successful in your off-course ventures. But your fans don’t get to root for you as you build a corporate empire. We’d prefer to watch you walking up the 18th fairway with a victory in your sights.
I hope you will consider getting back into competitive golf. As much as I love your commentary at the Masters, I’d much rather see you play (and hell, if you miss the cut you can still work the booth on the weekend.) Think about it – Fred Couples is your age and he has proven that he belongs. Tom Watson is 8 years your senior and he has recently competed in the Open Championship.
There is no reason you couldn’t play 5-10 Champions Tour Events per year, along with 2 Majors, while continuing to thrill us all with your work in the booth as well as building your corporate empire. Regret is an awful thing, and someday you may regret the missed opportunities you’re sure to have on the course over the next 10 years.