Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Gary Player Knows A Golfer Who Has Used Steroids. So Who Is It?

Fiery, combustible and South African, is Gary Player saying that Rory Sabbatini uses steroids?*

Gary Player today said that he knows of at least one golfer who has used steroids and said it had a HUGE effect but is sworn to secrecy about it:
"One guy told me -- and I took an oath prior to him telling me -- but he told me what he did and I could see this massive change in him," Player said. "And somebody else told me something I also promised I wouldn't tell, that verified others had done it."
Which leads us to wonder which player he is talking about. Well, Player is South African so he's got ties there but he stopped playing on the PGA regular tour in 1985 and now plays the Champions Tour while only making spotty appearances in majors. So who has Gary been around who would feel comfortable enough to confide in him about this matter. If we're starting in South Africa--Gary's native land--then we'll have to include, Els, Goosen, Sabbatini, Tim Clark and Fulton Allem as well as a handful of others. Els is an interesting candidate because he broke down physically after dominating for awhile and that is often how we in American pick out steroid abusers but he didn't really seem to change all that much physically from pre-stardom to stardom. Sabbatini is also a VERY intriguing guess as he is just crazy enough to do it and his star has risen in recent years after some disappointing times in his early going. His problem is that he's not all that big and I don't think his play in terms of strength stats like driving distance have changed all that much. Player has also been the Captain of the International Team for the President's Cup for the past 3 events. So that opens up a whole slew of players.

It may not be fair (or responsible) to start guessing haphazardly about who it was that Gary Player was referring to. But Gary should know better than to open this door. It's only natural to want to know who it is he is talking about and there is no doubt that names will be tossed around and reputations sullied. Let the sullying begin.

*Picture is actually of Rory Sabbatini's wife and not Rory himself, in case there was any confusion about that.

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