ELPGA: The English Ladies Professionals Golf Association

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One of the most ridiculous rules & penalties will be implemented in the highest level of women’s golf in the world towards the end of 2009.  The LPGA will make it mandatory that all players speak & pass a test in English after 2 years of being in the LPGA.  From ESPN.com, “Players were told by LPGA commissioner Carolyn Bivens that by the end of 2009, all players who have been on the tour for two years must pass an oral evaluation of their English skills or face a membership suspension. A written explanation of the policy was not given to players, according to the report.” 

As indicated at the end, THERE WAS NO REASON.  Not only was it stupid, it was failed to be justified.  I’m utterly passionate about it because people of my diaspora are kicking butt in the field and honestly are dominating it, but these rules were put into place to hopefully discourage them?  To have fewer Korean women dominate the sport?  There was brief mention there were less sponsors on the tour.  This is the closest to being somewhat reasonable because the purses depend on sponsorships, but how about focusing on what to do in order to get more sponsors rather than target the world outside the English speaking countries?

Are the victory speeches “in English” what the sponsors want?  Come on…  It’s having more players like an American born Korean MIchelle Wie.  It’s having other exciting players similar to Tiger Woods.  It’s multiple things to spice up the tour.  Forcing English upon International players has got to be the most ridiculous thing I have ever seen in sport.

More about the ruling here.


Filed under Interesting..., Korean women, Opinions, Sports, Stupid, Theories by Brandon

3 responses to “ELPGA: The English Ladies Professionals Golf Association

  1. Sun

    A certain tour stop executive director stated that “this is an American tour….”

    Food for thought, since 1995 the LPGA Player of the Year, has not been an American, but Korean, Australian, Swedish and Mexican, 12 out of 37 tournaments are outside of the country and the majority of the winners on tour this year have are foreign born. This is not an AMERICAN tour, but an international one! In addition, most sponsors of the tour are not just AMERICAN companies but are multinational corporations that due business all over the world. English ability has nothing to do with your golf swing or the tour. That policy is a joke! My 2 cents

  2. x3

    you should write about anthony kim, the next golf superstar.

  3. Of course, it’s all about sponsorship/public appeal. And that in turn is the wherewithall that drives the industry. American sport spectators want sex appeal that they can identify with, as seen in Professional tennis, basketball, volleyball, etc.

    Pudgy girls with pidgin or no English – as the rare exception- are acceptable, as witnessed by both golf and tennis – always provided they are gifted with prodigious talent. But when the startling beauties become a minority, the spectator appeal diminishes. I am old enough to have breathed heavily over the talented Haage sisters who wouldn’t have received half the attention they did if they had been plain as flowersacks. Remember ‘Gorgeous Gussie’ Moran and her celebrated knickers at Wimbledon in 1949. She simply stole the show.
    I think the Korean girls/ladies should look at their countrywoman, the superb Grace Park, described by the The Boston Globe as “the striking beauty, the tall and proud walk, the dazzling smile”, as a role model. She incarnates all the right qualities: talent,modesty and beauty with flawless English, great intelligence and irresistable charm. Some of that is of course genetic, but much is from determination and effort.
    On the other hand, the ladies professional tennis circus shows us that ‘foreigners’, particularly those from Russian and Eastern Europe, immediately understand the demands of the audience to which they’re playing – the people who pay for their sports cars and diamonds. All of them quickly learn to use sex appeal and to speak English, even though it’s usually of a McEnroe-ian banality, ‘like, like, you know?’.
    But even with their Paris Hilton English, they communicate with their fans, a vital dimension in sports.
    Conclusion: The rule, in itself, is unfair, petty, and somewhat jingoistic. If it were applied to American golfers when they play abroad, it would eliminate almost all entrants. Still in the Realpolitik of professional sport, it is in the best interest of the Korean players to learn English and present themselves in the best possible light. The effort can only enrich, not demean or diminish them.
    A Sport Historian

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