Evian Masters Coverage, Wie
Minnesotan James Nixon was quick today with a suggestion for Mike Purkey and his Golf World Rewind column:
Once again this week, fans of women's golf are being subjected to the third-rate golf coverage provided by French television for the Golf Channel feed of the Evian Masters. Each year, the announcers struggle with balls lost in the sky, incorrect scores relayed to the booth and no continuity as far as showing recoveries from errant shots by the leaders. This jumble of television golf has become an annual black mark on TV golf coverage.
I'm pretty sure the French trade unions control the cameras and there is no possibility of ever improving their performance. However, It think it would be appropriate for either the Golf Channel to acknowledge they are doing their best with a bad situation (instead of pretending it doesn't exist), or for Golf World, in its excellent TV Rewind column, to point out that Golf Channel can't help the rotten production and ask viewers to be tolerant.
That coverage saw Helen Alfredsson win her third Evian Masters in a playoff, with no Michelle Wie in the field. Under the headline "Evian Masters will always welcome struggling golpher Michelle Wie," the Canadian Press had this interesting tidbit on Wie and exemptions, quoting tournament director Jacques Bungert:
"This year B.J. (Wie's father) called me. Obviously he didn't want to ask for an exemption," Bungert said. "I guess to him the pride was for Michelle to qualify directly to the Evian Masters. She asked for tournaments that could help her get back on track as well. Evian is not an easy course or tournament.">
Easy courses being those that don't kill the golphers, I suppose.