Another letter from the DOC…
Every now and then I bump into an ‘old player’. Somebody that I, at some time, have met or worked with in one of the national teams that I have been involved in. Obviously some players are and have been closer than others, mainly because I have had different roles over the years. It is clearly not the same to coach somebody yourself and have that close working relationship, as it is to direct a programme where other coaches and managers do that day to day work. Everytime I do get the opportunity for a quick chat to somebody though, close or more distant, it is great to catch up and learn what has become of the hard work that we all put in back in the day.
Sometimes these players that I meet are on tour, perhaps in the US or on the European equivalent. As it is very unlikely, not to say impossible, that all of them reach that far, it happens that I also cross paths with those that have left golf. Or at least they do not play at that competitive level anymore. Here is where it gets even more interesting. I wonder what they think when they see me? The guy that spent his every hour awake to try and help them become a better player, and to get as far as they possibly could. It might just be my twisted interpretation, but I cannot help getting the feeling that some of these boys and girls, that are now men and women, feel that they have an obligation to tell me what went wrong. In other words, why they did not become that world beater that we all aimed at. The funny thing is that I, in the nicest possible way, could not care less. What I am interested in is how they are as a person and how happy they are with their life. Ever since my early days of being mentored by Pia Nilsson that has always been my biggest excitement. If we can help everyone become a great person that has a good life, some of them will go on to become fantastic athletes. Others will just be fantastic.
And if I had to choose between a certain world beater and somebody who had the potential but did not get there for whatever reason? Well, as long as life is good and he or she is good to the people in life therein – I know where I would want my son or daughter to be!
“One ought to hold on to one’s heart; for if one lets it go, one soon loses control of the head too.”
– Friedrich Nietzsche