Robert MacIntyre: “Why I’ll never ask to play…


Most golfers would bite your hand off to play with Tiger Woods – but Robert MacIntyre has vowed never to ask for a round with the 15-time major winner.

Scotland’s top-ranked golfer has never played with Woods, and admitted the 46-year-old remains the only player he would still be in awe of out on the course.

The pair were close to being drawn together at the Masters earlier this year, as they sat around the same score after the cut.

But MacIntyre admitted he may not be able to fully prepare until the moment arrives.

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“How do you prepare for it?,” he asked.

“I’ve thought about it. I thought I was getting him at the Masters on Saturday.

“The hardest thing is the crowd. When he holes out they disappear. They run everywhere. That’s the most difficult part.

“I stood on the putting green on the Monday or Tuesday and it was like a herd coming. You could hear the rumble. It was totally different. The attention on the event was unbelievable.”

At Augusta in April, MacIntyre got close to Woods – when he had to go back to the tee at the 11th with his hero waiting behind.

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“I wasn’t wanting to go back,” he admitted.

“I’d hit a bad tee shot and there was a small tree. I thought I could advance it forward and Mike [Thomson, his caddy] said ‘you can’t’. I said, ‘I’m not going back to the tee, I know he’s there’. But I took the penalty.

“I didn’t even look at him or Kevin Kisner. But he’s just another man. I’ve spoken to Phil on the range at Torrey Pines but Tiger now is the only man that I will be in awe of playing with.”

Would the Oban native ever seek out the former world No.1 for a practice round?

“Never. Never,” MacIntyre said.

“I don’t think he would open up. I’ve had a thing from my first major where I wouldn’t put myself out of my own comfort zone when I can control my environment.

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“In a practice round you can pick and choose who you play with. At Portrush in 2019, I put my name down then Ian Poulter put his down and someone else. I pulled my name from it. I didn’t want to be in a group that gets attention and scrutinised. I get it now that people will want to watch me but I’d rather play with two pals or two guys I know well and have some fun with.”

But what about if Tiger asks to play with him?

“No problem, in you come,” MacIntyre laughed.

“Until that happens, I’ll not put my name next to him. I want to play with him. Growing up he was the best I’ve ever seen. If I get the chance it’ll be something I’ll never forget.”

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