Shark scarier than Tiger
FORMER Australian Open champion John Senden has admitted that Greg Norman is a far more intimidating opponent than Tiger Woods.
Senden, who has played alongside both players on a number of occasions, said the Shark’s aura was extremely powerful.
“I always thought that Greg Norman had more of an aura than Tiger,” he said.
“Maybe that’s got something to do with age because I was still quite young when we played together.
“When I played with Tiger he had that aura as well, but I didn’t feel as intimidated playing with Tiger than I did with Greg Norman.”
Senden has enormous respect for Norman, who he looks up to as a “father-figure” in golf.
“Personally, I haven’t had a lot to do with Greg, but I feel he has looked after me and he always asks ‘how’s your game – how are you looking’.
“When I have played with Tiger in 2007, I looked at him on the first tee and saw how focussed and quiet-minded he was and thought, ‘this is the guy to beat’.
“I knew he had won everything else before that, but I had a really good day on the first day and beat him.
“He beat me by a couple of shots on the second day, but I was two in front of him after two rounds and then he shot something like 66-65 on the weekend to win the tournament.
“I played with him again at the Deutsche Bank in Boston last year and he looked very different.
“He wasn’t performing as well on the golf course and was getting frustrated with his short game and putting.
“He was still great to play with – very friendly and always great to watch whether he’s playing good or bad.”
Senden said playing alongside Woods can be daunting because of all the commotion going on around him.
“He is not the distraction – it’s his entourage, the crowd and the noises you hear because of the numbers of people following him,” he said.
The lanky Queenslander believes Woods has the ability to one day dominate the golf world again.
“He has got to get his body (and mind) right first, but I think it’s possible that he could dominate the game again,” he told Inside Golf.
“But no-one really knows what is going on with his lifestyle.
“We have all seen what’s happened so he’s got that hurdle to take care of as well.”
Senden, who won the John Deere Classic in 2006, is searching for his second victory on the US PGA Tour and hopes it will be enough to catapult him into the International team for the Presidents Cup.
“To be recognised by Greg Norman I really need to win before the Cup,” he said.
“ The ultimate goal would be to play in the Presidents Cup on home soil.”