Roger & Tiger both win on Sunday

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

At last for Fed. Always gracious in victory, ever candid in rare defeat. Of last 4 majors, he’s won 2 (US Open and French), losing the other two in the 5th set (Wimbledon and Australian). Sounds good?! Nadal has won 3 of the last 5 (Australian, Wimbledon and French ’08). Terrific players and better examples of sportsmanship. I admire Roger especially for his capability to look at himself from the outside to in. Even when he says how great he played, it seems sincere, thoughtful and true.

Tiger rallied from 4 strokes back to win Jack Nicklaus’s tournament, The Memorial, on the final day. He played three incredible (for other golfers) shots on the final 9 holes to win nearly before other competitors finished their rounds. As he walked off the 18th hole with a 2 stroke lead, Jack Nicklaus congratulated him. We saw their brief conversation on camera but not on interview or with a reporter. JN shook Tiger’s hand, congratulated him on the round and obvious victory and said, “now go out there and win the Open”, meaning the US Open (golf not tennis) at Bethpage in two weeks. Reflexively, Tiger replied, “Yes sir, I’ll try” showing his respect for the man whose legend and achievements that he pursues. Could you imagine an athlete from another sport such as basketball or baseball or football having such poise and a sense of how their own opportunities were created?!

The demeanor of these two superlative athletes and their commitment to improvement motivates me to improve upon whatever I’m trying to achieve.