By Robert Bicknell

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September 24, 2006

Michelle Wie needs to come to Phan Thiet...

According to a recent article, Michelle Wie, the 16-year old phenom who has yet to win an event on any tour, yet wants to compete on the men’s PGA Tour, now claims she wants to play in the Ryder Cup.

Does this remind you of a typical teenager in a candy store?

"I want a chocolate bar. No, a chocolate bar with almonds. No, make that a vanilla chocolate sundae with nuts. No, make that marshmallows…"


"I want to play against the men. No, I want to play in the Men’s US Open. No, I want to play in the Masters, No I want to play in the Ryder Cup…"

Somebody, anybody, pleeeeease whack her in the head with a sand wedge.

Since she obviously needs something to kick-start her career in beating men, I contacted Jeff Puchalski over at Ocean Dunes in Phan Thiet and asked him to invite Mademoiselle Wie to attend the Gannon Vietnam Open Championship next year. Of course, she has to play off the back tees in the professional division and since she wants to play with the men, she has to use the men’s locker room as well, hey no use taking half measures, if you’re gonna do it, go whole hog.

They say she’s long off the tee…wonderful. I’m sure Lars Holden, Jeff or yours truly would love to have a long drive contest with her. She has all the shots…wonderful. I’m sure Huynh Van Do would love to demonstrate 101 ways to use a three-wood and watch her go screaming into the night.

If she cannot beat us, then she should go back to school, finish college and rethink her priorities. Either that or compete on the LPGA Tour and get a few victories against the ladies under her belt first

So Michelle, come to beautiful Phan Thiet. Fantastic weather, nice beaches, great seafood and some old pros to beat up on. Oh yeah, one more thing…

The Yucca want to say hello to you too…

Speaking of Jeff (was I?), he read last week’s column and responded exactly as I thought he would… "Traitor! Benedict Arnold! No more muffin deliveries and you can forget any Barney videos for your kid too!"

Ok, I’m joking. Jeff is far too much a gentleman to talk like that. In fact, I’ve never seen him lose his temper, which is fine as I lose it enough for both of us. However, I suspect he was slightly irked because he did inquire if I had misplaced my "team spirit."

Personally, I have to admit that, due to living overseas for so long, I draw the line at patriotism when it comes to sport. To me, "let the best man win" is more than a metaphor, it is a reality. I don’t care where a player comes from. People are people and nationality nothing more than a label.

As to who the "best man" actually is…it sure ain’t Tiger Woods.

If you could put together a Dream Team for a global Ryder Cup competition, the first name on the list, without a doubt, would be Mrs Doubtfire…er, Colin Montgomerie.

Yeah, I know what you’re say