It always seemed strange that big names like Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy would choose to start their season overseas instead of here in the United States at big PGA Tour stops.
That is, until you saw the price tag attached to just showing up that big draws get for certain events. Prices are never certain, but in Tiger's day he could land $2 or $3 million easy just for going to a tournament in certain parts of the world and playing, which was normally double what he might earn if he actually won the tournament.
Times are certainly changing, and the Qatar Golf Association president doesn't see the benefit of tossing that kind of dough at Tiger anymore.
“Tiger Woods demands $3 million just for an appearance, if he were to compete in the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters - which is not worth paying for a tournament of $2.5 million prize money,” Hassan al Nuaimi said during a press conference.
I'm pretty sure al Nuaimi isn't the only one that thinks this. Tiger getting $3 million these days to show up sure seems steep and until you crunch numbers and see just what the 14-time major winner does for ticket sales (and sponsors), you'd think throwing that amount of cash at a guy just to show up would be insane.
Justin Rose and Jason Dufner are among the big names to compete in the Qatar Masters that kick off on January 23 and with that tournament conflicting with the Famers at Torrey Pines I'd be surprised if Tiger skipped it anyway (even though he did last year to play in Abu Dhabi), but yeah, $3 million seems crazy for Woods these days.
If nothing else, it's nice to hear a president of an organization actually come out and say such a thing about these fees. It's nice for the big guys that get that amount of money, but does seem to take away from the importance of actually playing in a golf tournament to win and earn your living.
On the flip side, if Tiger was playing in the Qatar Masters in two weeks, wouldn't we all be paying a little more attention to what happened? I'm sure we would, just like we will next week when he tees it up in Abu Dhabi.
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