On Sunday we checked out the Barclays Singapore Open golf tournament. Now, I’m pretty green when it comes to golf’s stars, familiar with only a handful of players. The names I recognized in attendance here this year were Ernie Els and Angel Cabrera, though apparently I’ve missed Adam Scott‘s rise to the top. He won the Singapore Open last year and is currently ranked sixth in the world.
I’ve never been to a golf event (let alone walked a golf course) before, and was looking forward to checking out a tournament in person. I caught a bit of the third round on TV and learned that when sirens blare out over the course, there is lightning danger and everyone comes indoors. We arrived at the course just past noon, and decided to get some lunch first. This was a good move because as soon as we sat down the skies opened outside and the masses flooded indoors to stay dry. Within minutes the place was packed and no seats were available. Once the rain let up we headed outdoors and walked around the course a bit waiting for play to resume. Soon enough we saw players get carted out to the holes they were at before the rain came.
A dozen or so players were still due to tee off, so we walked to the first hole to watch. Ernie Els and Adam Scott were the last pairing, each at -8 after the first three rounds. Naturally, they had the biggest following, making it difficult to get a good view, especially when everyone is short and is carrying a huge golf umbrella. So we decided to stay ahead of the crowd, following the players’ path along the course.
After the third hole we were stopped by a reporter who asked us for some comments on the event. I told him I don’t really know much about golf, recognizing Ernie Els but not Adam Scott. He kind of looked at me in disbelief, then continued asking about the weather, and so on. He snapped our photo and we were on our way. We had a good laugh about it on our way to the fifth hole.
Eventually we decided to keep walking until we got to the ninth green, where we would take a good position and sit there, watching the putts until Els and Scott came through. To our dismay, the ninth green was surrounded by restaurant tents; the best view seemed to be from the pattio. Fortunately we managed to find a little spot between the two pavillions where a handful of fans could watch. It began to rain, so we broke out the umbrellas and held our spots. The golfers kept it going through the rain. Eventually the drizzle turned torrential and the sirens sounded, bringing everyone in. Els and Scott were still two holes away!
The thunderstorm was right above us, the lightning and thunder happening almost at the same instant. Our umbrellas weren’t enough to keep us dry; as I sloshed through the rain towards the exit I wondered whether I would have been any better off with one of those huge umbrellas. We joined the masses fleeing the course and headed home, soaked. Lucky for us Els and Scott had a three hole playoff to complete to resolve their tie, and we caught the third hole on TV, watching Scott successfully defend his crown.
Yesterday we bought The New Paper looking for our faces, and sure enough there we were! Here’s what the reporter put in print:
Mike Mazur, 25: I know who Ernie Els is, but I don’t know who Adam Scott is.
You said he’s from Australia? And he’s rakned sixth in the world?
Pardon me, but I really don’t follow the golf scene.
This is my first time watching a golf tournament, thanks to my wife, who is an avid golf fan.
Shux Mazur, 25: I brought my husband to Sentosa so that he can learn more about some of the world’s great players.
The funny thing is, I was explaining the concept of par, birdies and bogies to Shux as we walked around the course 🙂 All in all it was fun checking out the tourney. Maybe it’s time to visit the driving range that’s about 10 minutes away from my house?