Imagine you had the ability to create the world’s greatest ever golfer by putting together the different components from other players that make them so talented, into one single golfer for the modern epoch. What a tough decision to make from all of the greatest players of the modern era to play the game!
Who would you choose to have drive the ball? Play iron shots? Pepper the pin with wedges, craft rescue shots from the sand and rough of unbelievable skill? Whose physical abilities and mental strengths would you want and lastly, who would you want the ability of to putt the ball into the hole to record the win?
It’s an unenviable task, but it is one that we at Gorilla Golf will not shy away from as we bring you our idea of the perfect golfer.
1. Physique & Natural Ability: Our choice would be the lithe elegance of Rory McIlroy
McIlroy has the perfect golf physique, not too short, not too tall and with a simple, yet mightily effective swing that is efficient, long and accurate. Allied to his seemingly genetic predisposition to winning and playing incredible golf shots, we’d take Rory’s natural ability over the more cultivated, but no less impressive, gait of Tiger, but it is mighty close indeed.
Besides, there is always the possibility that Mr Woods may make an appearance somewhere else in this list!
2. Mental Strength: Our choice would be the single-minded determination of Luke Donald
It doesn’t matter what the course or conditions throw at him, whether he has just shot a 62, or (more rarely) a 76, Donald’s demeanour on course or off it never changes. He is never too carried away when he shoots low, nor does he get overly frustrated when the ball does not run his way.
Donald’s temperament allows him to retain the physical composure he needs to be one of the most consistent golfers in the world today. He may no longer be number 1 in the world in ranking, but when it comes to steely composure, resolve and nerves of steel, Luke is our undeniable first choice.
3. Driving the ball: Our choice would be the consistency and distance of Lee Westwood
Certainly, other players may hit the ball longer, Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods, Bubba Watson and Dustin Johnson can whack the ball prodigious distances, but when it comes to a combination of decent length from the tee and unerring accurracy, especially when it really matters, Westwood is the king amongst his peers.
Over the last few years, Westwood’s play from tee to green has been arguably the best in the major tournaments of any player and he is the man who’s skills we’d love to have with the driver on our hand on that crucial 18th and final hole.
4. Fairway Wood & Iron shots: Our choice would be the length and accuracy of Tiger Woods
Woods’ all round game is so good that he is a contender in almost every department here and that is testament to his incredible ability as a golfer. Yet it is the sheer number and variety of his iron shots and fairway wood thumps that pepper the flag, often from vast distances away from the hole, that have made us select him here, such as this miracle shot shown above from the 2011 Masters tournament.
5. Wedge shots: Our choice would be the flag-peppering genius of Phil Mickelson.
Indeed, sights like the video above, when Mickelson chipped in at both the 17th and 18th hole at Doral in 2009 for birdie at both on his way to a round of 65 and a share of the lead. Indeed, so good is Mickelson in situations like this that there is an air of hushed anticipation every time he lines up a chip shot now.
6. Rescue shots: Our choice would be the abilities of Severiano Ballesteros
When faced with the shot in the video above, most players would take their punishment and chip out safely to the left. Not Seve, who time after time conjured up shots of such breathtaking ingenuity that his occasionally errant driving would sometimes not affect his final score too unduly.
7. Putting: Our choice would be the ball-sinking skills of Tiger Woods
In one remarkable season, Woods made every single putt he faced of three feet and under and sunk many a great deal longer and his consistency on the greens as much as his spectacular iron and wood play has made him the superstar that he is today.
So that’s our perfect golfer from the modern era, who would you pick for yours?