ut even with the obstacles, golf feels very good about the informed bet it made on itself in convincing the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to bring the sport back to the Summer Games at Rio and in 2020 in Tokyo. Basically, the Olympics constitutegolf’sultimate“growthe game” play.The sport will be on the world’s biggest athletic stage, part of a telecast that will be viewed by as many as four billion people in more than 200 countries. Over 13 straight days, Golf Channel will provide more than 300 hours of coverage of the men and women’s tournaments, including 130 hours of live coverage, with the NBC golf team led by Johnny Miller, Nick Faldo, Judy Rankin and Annika Sorenstam. No-cut medal play was chosen because it would allow as many countries to be represented as possible, with as much potential exposure as possible.The goal isn’t to entertain the hardcore fan from mature golf markets as much as it is to lure new fans – especially young people – from among the millions around the world who have always been outside golf’s tent.
Nationalism is a powerful force for growth.A recent study found that 85 countries that invest government money in sports do so only if the sport is in the Olympics.This means that after Rio, many developing nations will have a golf culture for the rst time. It’s anticipated that countries obsessed by Olympic achievement – China and Russia being the largest – will make huge investments to develop high-level talent. Jack Nicklaus, who helped the International Golf Federation (IGF) present the case for golf’s inclusion to the IOC, says he wouldn’t be surprised if China, where he has built 28 courses and has 11 more in development, “within the next 20 years had
ve of the top-10 players in the world.”
While in India recently, Tiger Woods said that if Anirban Lahiri, a mainstay among the top 60 in the world the