Sir Nick Faldo says he wanted Jordan Spieth to fail at Masters so as to protect one of his own cherished Major records
Faldo says he wanted Jordan Spieth to fail at Masters
Sir Nick Faldo has caused a wee furore with some light-hearted comments at a fundraiser about how he wants some current players to do badly to protect his own records and achievements. These comments were reported in the Columbus Dispatch.
Faldo was at this fundraiser with Jack Nicklaus for Nationwide Children’s Hospital for the annual Legends Luncheon fundraiser at the Ohio Union. The pair were doing a question-and-answer session with the audience and Nicklaus was asked about Tiger Woods‘ attempt on his Major-winning record:
“I’ve had Tiger chasing me for a long time,” replied Nicklaus. “But, you know, I don’t ever, I don’t actually sit there and root for him. But I don’t root against him, either.”
Faldo then cut in: “Oh, I do.”
Faldo then went on to talk about how at one point he had been actively wishing Jordan Spieth to do badly at the US Masters:
“I was sitting up there dodging bullets from this young man. Day one, he’s in the middle of the 15th fairway at 8 under par, and my fellow announcers were all, ‘Wouldn’t it be nice if he shoots a 62?’ And I’m thinking, Jack and I are both in the 63 club; that’s the best round in any Major.”
“‘So I’m sitting in my (tower) at 18, saying, ‘No, it wouldn’t be nice’. He takes that 4-wood out, and I know it’s the wrong club and I’m going, ‘Hit it! Hit it! Hit it!’ And he did, and he hits it over the green and three putts so that was that.”
Faldo said he also let out an off-air “Yes!” when Spieth missed the 6ft putt on the 18th in round two which have broken the record for lowest 36-hole score (130) in a Major, a record that was shared by Nick Faldo, Brandt Snedeker and Martin Kaymer.
After Faldo’s comments were reported, Jack Nicklaus issued a statement the next day:
“Nick Faldo was obviously making a joke with his comments about Jordan yesterday, and everyone at the function, including me, took it that way. We were entertaining an audience at a fundraiser, and Nick’s comment was said purely in jest. Nick made it clear he has a tremendous amount of respect for Jordan as a person and a champion.”
Faldo retweeted Nicklaus’ comments and added, “Thanks, Jack. #PlentyofRespect
Faldo’s answer was clearly meant as a joke, but his comments can be considered to include an element of candour in them, too. After all, as Jack Nicklaus himself said at this fundraiser: “Nobody likes to see their record broken, but if someone breaks it, well done.”
Rob Oller, the sports reporter for The Dispatch who broke the original story, wrote a follow-up article defending Faldo after criticism of the six-time Major winner’s comments, in which he wrote: “None of Faldo’s comments was mean-spirited. Rather, he was offering a bit of honesty delivered with a wink and a smile.”