There is a sports truism that says playing not to loose is not the same as
playing to win. This is usually illustrated with examples of someone who was leading an event only to
eventually lose to someone else.
I think It happens often enough that it seems to be true. Its almost painful to watch as the
hapless individual self-destructs before our eyes. The
thing is, it’s not usually because he or she lacks the physical ability
to win, it’s that they seem to lack the mental toughness to be champions. They seem
to lack the focus to quiet, or at least ignore, that part of their mind
that whispers tales of self-doubt. So, either they become timid, and
stop doing what they were doing to get the lead, or they become foolish
and take risks that do not pay off.
Now compare them to “Eye of the Tiger” Woods. No matter what score he eventually ends up with, he is
playing to win. Yes, so is everyone else on the golf course – or so it
seems. But he is usually the one who, having scratched his way to the
lead, uses both hands to keep a strangle hold on that prize. He has the
ability to focus and block everything else out.
This past weekend, Hawaii’s favorite 16-year-old golfer Michelle Wie was leading the tournament by
two strokes with seven holes to go. In the end, she lost by one to the
hard charging Australian Karrie Webb.
Although Webb has had her own problems in the past, I have to admire the pluck of this Aussie. I
think she well represents the best of her country and, I hope, Michelle
can learn from this experience and finally find her way to the winner’s