In a first, Obama plays golf with Tiger Woods

President Barack Obama  Credit: Reuters
President Barack Obama
Credit: Reuters

President Barack Obama saw firsthand how golf is played at the highest level on Sunday, teeing off with Tiger Woods, the world’s No. 2 golfer who is rebuilding a once-squeaky clean image tarnished by a messy 2010 divorce.

Obama, an avid weekend golfer, and Woods, who won his 75th title last month, played together for the first time at the exclusive Floridian Yacht and Golf Club, which was surrounded by a cordon of security.

“It’s good to see you play well again,” Obama told Woods, according to GolfDigest.com.

Less than a month after starting his second term, Obama is on a three-day golf getaway in Florida, while his wife, Michelle, and their daughters, Malia and Sasha, are skiing in Colorado. On Saturday he received instructional tips from Woods’ former swing coach, Butch Harmon.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Obama and Woods were joined on the course by U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and Jim Crane, the resort owner who also owns the Houston Astros baseball team.

Tim Rosaforte, a Golf Channel analyst and Golf Digest writer, broke the news, tweeting that Woods holed out from a greenside sand bunker on the first hole.

“Historic day in golf. Their first round,” Rosaforte said.

There was no word on how Obama played.

Harmon, according to GolfDigest.com, said he saw the interaction between Woods and Obama on the range before teeing off. Obama congratulated Woods on winning the Farmers Insurance Open last month.

“The president said to Tiger, ‘The last tournament you played was fun to watch. It’s good to see you play well again,’” Harmon said.

The White House resisted appeals from reporters to allow the traveling press pool onto the grounds of the resort in order to record some part of the Woods-Obama round. Previous presidents have allowed some press access of presidential golf rounds.

The White House refusal prompted a protest from the White House Correspondents Association.

“Speaking on behalf of the White House Correspondents Association, I can say a broad cross section of our members from print, radio, online and TV have today expressed extreme frustration to me about having absolutely no access to the president of the United States this entire weekend,” said WHCA President Ed Henry, a Fox News correspondent. “There is a very simple but important principle we will continue to fight for today and in the days ahead: transparency.”

The White House said in response that the press access granted was “entirely consistent with the press access offered for previous presidential golf outings” and consistent with the access promised prior to Obama’s arrival in Florida on Friday.

Woods, who usually steers clear of politics, is the top-ranked American golfer and second in the world. He lives about an hour’s drive south of the Floridian club in Jupiter, Florida.

Woods’ image was tarnished after his extramarital affairs with other women came to light in 2009. He and his then-wife Elin Nordegren divorced the following year.

Like many of his predecessors, Obama has escaped the pressures of the Oval Office by taking to the golf course. He has played more than 100 rounds of golf as president and typically tees it up with a group of close-knit friends.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

South Korea ferry disaster: captain's actions 'tantamount to…

The captain and some crew members of the sunken South Korean passenger ferry Sewol have been accused of 'murderous acts' by their own president, after…

News

Easter Egg hunt horror as skydiver plummets to…

A FAMILY Easter egg hunt ended in horror when a skydiver plummeted to his death in a New York garden after his parachute failed to…

News

Boston Marathon 2014 on high alert, Red Sox…

One year on from the horrific Boston Marathon bombings a ring of steel has been thrown around today's race, and a city stands defiant against…

News

Boston Strong: One year on from Boston Marathon…

  For more than a century the Boston Marathon has been an even centred around sportsmanship, endurance and athleticism, but there's no denying the face…

Television

‘Mad Men’ recap: Season 7, Episode 2, ‘A…

Peggy and Lou are horrible, Bert's racist, Don is honest(ish) and Roger and Pete are frustrated. "A Day's Work" not quite worthy of "This Will Be Our Year."

Television

'Game of Thrones' recap: Season 4, Episode 3,…

The problem with the devil you know is that ignoring them doesn’t mean they simply lie in wait. It allows them time to do things…

Television

Discovery cancels 'Everest Jump Live' special in wake…

The Discovery Channel has indicated it will not be moving forward with "Everest Jump Live," a planned special about mountain climber Joby Ogwyn's effort to…

The Word

'X-Men' director Bryan Singer drama continues

  News broke late last week that "X-Men" and "The Usual Suspects" director Bryan Singer is being sued by a man who said Singer molested…

NHL

Ray Emery steps up in Flyers’ Game 2…

Sure, he allowed two goals in the Rangers’ first four shots Sunday afternoon, but it’s about how you start, not how you finish.

NHL

Flyers come from behind, even series with Rangers

The Flyers overcame a two-goal deficit to get a much-needed win at Madison Square Garden Sunday.

MLB

Phillies get set for four against the Dodgers

The Phillies will face tough starting pitching out west against the Dodgers this week.

MLB

Phillies notebook: Cole Hamels returns this week

The Phillies should receive a big boost when Cole Hamels returns during the Dodgers series.

Travel

Packing: The one thing you need in your…

A new survey that looks at the travel habits of 50,000 people around the world has revealed that Western and Asian globetrotters have different priorities…

Home

Is your chair making it hard to talk?

Ever wished there was an office chair that could make impromptu meetings and discussions more private? The Cristiana Wing Chair is an asymmetrical armchair which…

Travel

Live large at these luxury hotels

From Thai boxing lessons and macabre Dracula tours to the Australian Outback, the Four Seasons hotel chain launched a series of new travel packages this…

Parenting

4 things that every summer camp should have

Alan Saltz, director of the 92nd street Y program lists things that every summer camp should have.