Greg Norman and Fred Couples, two of golf’s biggest names, are leading the International and U.S. teams, respectively, into the 9th Presidents Cup this week. Not only were they golf’s biggest stars while in their primes, they were also fashion icons when it came to golf fashion.
After becoming a superstar on the world golf stage, Norman started his own clothing line in 1992, complete with a four-coloured shark logo that would quickly become one of the most recognizable symbols in golf. The flowing sandy hair, broad shoulders, cool Aussie accent, booming tee shots and uber aggressive game, Norman was the Tiger Woods of the 80s and early 90s. Every major and big tournament, if Norman was in the hunt, I’d be glued to the TV. He was either going to overpower the course and ride to victory or his ultra-aggressiveness was going to produce a train wreck on Sunday, and rarely was there anything in between. Everyone wanted to be him.
With his laidback demeanor and carefree attitude, Couples (a.k.a. Freddie) came at the game differently. You didn’t necessarily want to be him but you definitely wanted to hang out with him. Freddie was the frontman for Ashworth at its peak and in its heyday, the iconic walking stick man Ashworth logo simply made a shirt.
I grew up idolizing both, especially Norman (a.k.a. The Shark) and as a young teenager, working at the local public course, my friends and I would gather around the latest Ashworth shipment to see what was new for the season. Countless hours were spent picking out the one thing we could buy from that collection (making $2.50 an hour didn’t allow for multiple purchases).
Unfortunately, both careers can only be defined as disappointing, as these two combined for only three majors but both were in their prime during a period devoid of true hall-of-famers (outside of Sir Nick Faldo). It’s interesting
they’ve both reached such iconic status in the game, but consistently failed on the course when it mattered the most. Sadly, both will go down as two of the game’s greatest underachievers given the elite talent.
Tomorrow, we’ll have a preview of the big event from Royal Melbourne and discuss the team uniforms.