Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Ian Poulter naked? Why?

Do we really need to see Ian Poulter naked?

The funny thing is Poulter is known primarily for the custom-made clothes he wears that have given him an identity beyond the scoreboard. I like his clothes, by the way, but wouldn’t wear them myself, having passed the expiration date on wearing tight-fitting trousers and anything lilac.

But it’s Poulter without clothes and his, shall we say, naked assertion recently that he’s the man to challenge Tiger Woods that has him in the news on the eve of the Dubai Desert Classic.

First, the photo.

Poulter and his spiked blond hair apparently found it amusing to pose for a European magazine cover with nothing but a strategically placed pink golf bag. It’s eye-catching, that’s for sure.
Then there’s what Poulter said in the March edition of Golf World (not the American version of the magazine).

“The problem is I know I haven’t played to my full potential yet. And when that happens, it will just be me and Tiger,” Poulter said.

Asked to pick a winner of the Masters in April, Poulter said, “Put Tiger down for that one.”

Asked to pick a winner of the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines in June, he said, “You can put me down for that one.”

So much for Tiger winning the Grand Slam.

If you’re confident enough to pose naked behind a golf bag, you’re confident enough to say you think you’re good enough to handle Tiger. I’m not going to bash a guy for being brash. Those of us in the media love when coaches or athletes say something provocative. Golf, you may have noticed, is a little short on trash talk.

And I like what Poulter brings to the game. He’s a guy who stands out in an individual sport that seems to run short of individuals.

The problem with what Poulter said is that he hasn’t won a tournament on the PGA Tour and now he’s on the way to being Tiger’s equal. He’s finished in the top three just twice in 70 career starts.

Poulter admits he hasn’t performed particularly well but says he’s found inspiration from reading a biography on Muhammad Ali (saying it’s the first book he’s ever read cover to cover, but that’s another issue).

He has given us another reason to pay attention to what happens in Dubai this week.

Safe to say, Ian Poulter is comfortable in his own skin.


Anonymous said...

I'm not much of a golf fan, but I must say, the influx of younger, hotter guys in the sport is making women like me give the sport a closer look. I went to the Wachovia championship here last year and had fun! As for Ian, I like his style (when he wears clothes), but I'd rather see Tiger naked.