Hensby lashes out at Wie's parents

Ausie Mark Hensby has told an Australian newspaper that Michelle Wie doesn’t deserve a spot on the John Deere classic in July, the event he won last year.

His quote on the subject is pretty biting:

“I don’t think a 15-year-old girl who’s done nothing at all should get a sponsor’s invitation to a PGA Tour event,” Hensby told the Australian, an Ausie newspaper. “If she qualified I wouldn’t have a problem, but to take a sponsor’s invitation, I don’t think that’s right.”

The outspoken Hensby is bang on in his take on this situation. Wie hasn’t done anything to warrant a special invite. She hasn’t won the US Am or the British Am, and didn’t win the public links. The way some speak of her, you’d think she was the female version of Ryan Moore, who won everything last year, but decided to remain an amateur for a while longer.

No, Wie is a bit of a freak show for television networks. The John Deere Classic is an event that few top players bother entering, since it comes a week before the British Open. Tiger and his buddies head to Ireland to play the classic links, while Mike Weir and several others head to England or Scotland to warm.

So, that means that Wie is the draw. After all, no one is tuning in to watch Hensby play — most Americans don’t even know who he is. So there’s the pragmatic reason for inviting Wie, but that really doesn’t have enough merit.

Hensby is right — Wie shouldn’t have been invited until she’s won something. I can actually understand inviting Annika Sorenstam to a PGA Tour stop — she’s the most dominant female golfer in the last 50 years. But Wie, a teenager who won’t make the cut, is another matter altogether.

It is time for Tim Finchem to step in and say enough Wie until she accomplishes something.

Other notes:

  • After a month layoff, Tiger Woods returns this weekend, meaning that people will likely tune into the Wachovia Championship. It is held on the Quail Hollow golf course, which Tom Fazio renovated. Apparently the players really liked it, though it didn’t strike me as being that interesting last year. PGA Tour players seem to be most interested in “fair” golf courses, which is usually pretty dull. Fazio courses also tend to be pretty, which PGA Tour players seem to approve of.
  • Apparently Davis Love III is going to renovate Angus Glen’s North Course, the site of the Canadian Open in 2007. Too bad the RCGA didn’t bother to tell Doug Carrick about it – since Doug and Jay Morrish designed the course. Typical.
  • Media Guru at Hooked On Golf sent me a note saying that he had also had problems with Callaway’s new HX Tour, which I noted yesterday. He also sent along some links regarding Nike balls. You can read them here and here.

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Jeff Lancaster

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