About a year ago I was first made aware of the “appearance fee” some golfers (in this case Tiger Woods) will charge just to show up to a tournament. I was on the fence about the idea at the time, and still am a year later.
Back then I wondered whether this was a good idea. I wondered if the tournament could be taken seriously if you have to pay players just to show up. But I also wondered, if the PGA is never going to put together a meaningful tournament schedule with the ultimate goal being a season ending championship, would this be a good idea for many smaller tournaments with the intention of drawing bigger crowds? One would think it could certainly help. But if events from last week are any indication, maybe some tournament organizers are shying away from this practice.
Tiger Woods’ game may not be what it once was, but the name still carries much weight. Having Tiger at your tournament would obviously draw bigger crowds therefore collecting more at the gate. But how much is he going to cost? And will his asking price be worth it? Apparently, the organizers at the Qatar Masters have decided no, it isn’t worth it.
Tiger Woods wants $3 million just to show up to the tournament. So whether he gives a half-hearted effort or not, he gets that money anyway…even if he doesn’t even make the cut! So maybe Qatar just doesn’t see the value in Tiger anymore. They’re not willing enough to shell out the money to have the game’s most polarizing figure there.
I’ve heard it mentioned that a country (or state) as small as Qatar can’t afford to spend that type of money for one player. But this is an oil-rich country with one of the highest GDP’s per capita in the world. They can afford it. So what then?
Maybe they really don’t see the value anymore. Maybe they don’t want the media baggage that comes along with Tiger. Maybe they simply don’t want to shell out the money for a guy who may not want to be there to begin with. Maybe a trend is starting…
Swing ’til you’re happy!