The Scottish are certain that they invented the game
of golf over 500 years ago but the Chinese, the French and even the Dutch have
also made such claims in the past.
We may never know who first played the game but does this
ancient sport really have a place in the modern world?
When the US golf team stepped off the plane in Ireland
recently at the beginning of the Ryder Cup competition they were dressed head
to toe in matching tweed suits and Fair Isle knitwear. It
seemed they wanted to invoke golf's history, roots and traditions but in
fact, most commentators and spectators thought they just looked plain
At the Royal and Ancient golf club of St
Andrews in Scotland the traditions, rules and regulations of golf are
still alive and well. Some say the numbers of dos and don'ts can seem pretty
overwhelming while others say the golfing code of conduct allows golf to
maintain its sporting values in spite of becoming a multi-million pound
At the heart of golf's rules are two principles -
respect for the course and respect for fellow golfers. Examples include
not talking during a player's swing, not disturbing a player who's
putting on the green and replacing divots.
Tiger Woods, the Thai-American player, is currently the
world's number one golf professional. He is also the face of one of the
world's biggest management consulting companies – Accenture. In today's
global marketplace everyone is looking for a way to get ahead and having
the trusted Tiger Woods as a spokesperson might just give this company the
edge it's looking for.
In China golf lessons are going to be compulsory for
some students at Xiamen University where its president Zhu Chongshi, recently
said "It will teach students communication skills and benefit their future
So it seems the ancient art of golf and the modern world of
commerce have found a happy balance together all around the globe.