Come back Tiger, golf needs you, says Simon Millington

The head of Forgan of St Andrews, the world’s oldest golf club manufacturer, has urged Tiger Woods to make a speedy return to the game amid fears that his absence could cost the sport up to £200million this year.

Simon Millington, Forgan CEO and owner of Sports PLC, a UK sports and leisure e-tailer, says the longer Woods takes from the game the greater chance that golf will lose revenues to other sports.

Says Millington: “Everyone in golf has been staggered by the Tiger Woods scandal, but it’s time to move our focus away from what he’s done and look at the bigger picture.

“Golf is a poorer sport and a poorer spectacle without Woods. He is pure box office and we saw TV audiences decline by 50 per cent when he took eight months out with his knee injury.

“Fewer people watching the game can easily translate to fewer people playing – and that spells disaster for the golf industry. We need him back quickly and the sooner we can shift attention away from his private life and back to his incredible ability on the course, then the better that will be.”

Experts are predicting that a Woods-free season could cost the golf industry £200million, while recent research showed that $12billion was wiped off the shareholder value of nine of Woods’ sponsors during 13 days of city trading after the scandal broke.

Several high-profile sponsors have dropped the star and are looking at alternative sponsorship opportunities – possibly outside of golf.

Adds Millington: “Commercially, people are talking about Tiger as damaged goods, but his return to the sport will be a media frenzy – and I believe that continues to make him a very bankable commodity.

“If he maintains his talent, then he will almost certainly break Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 Majors and again this would be a huge sporting story.

“As a golf equipment manufacturer, we’d love the opportunity to sponsor Tiger Woods. He’s the biggest sports star on the planet, even if his halo has slipped a bit.”

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button