• Harmon on what made Tiger great

    Tiger Woods
    Tiger Woods

    Tiger Woods was an ‘arrogant p***k’ and that helped lift him to the top of the game, according to his former coach, Butch Harmon.

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    Woods’ mindset set him apart from his rivals as he went on to claim 82 PGA TOUR wins, including 15 Majors.

    ‘You absolutely need a streak of arrogance to be a great champion, to be the best at what you do,’ said Harmon.

    ‘You’ve got to have a lot of p***k in you. You have to be that kind of guy when you walk between the ropes.

    ‘Tiger’s definitely that way. Guys like him just want to cut your heart out. They’ll go to dinner later on, or we’ll have a beer afterwards and joke. But when it comes time to play, I’m going to really get you.’

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    But Harmon added that other great golfers, including all-time Major leader Jack Nicklaus, shared the trait.
    ‘A certain Jack Nicklaus thought that way, too. He had that dose of arrogance you need. But you would never know it by his demeanour.

    ‘Tom [Watson] was the same way, although, like Jack, you’d never know it by his demeanour. But they had it. They knew how good they were.’

    Harmon believes star duo Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka are part of this trend of players still active in the modern game.

    ‘You and I know DJ as well as anybody. He is so laid back, but when he walks between the ropes he changes. Brooks is the same way. They just want to beat you so bad. It’s what drives them.

    ‘In Brooks’ case, I still don’t think he gets the credit for being as good as he is, even though he’s won four Majors in the last few years.’

    Photo: Brian Snyder/Reuters

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