That sinking feeling

It has been a miserable two days for Michelle Wie and Australian rookie Jon Abbott. It may not be much compensation for them to know, but the entire amateur golfing fraternity feels and knows their pain.

Every now and then the golfing gods decide to remind the pros that it?s actually a damn difficult game. Those highly-paid, immaculately turned out men and women who travel the globe, playing off luxurious green carpet on some of the planet?s most stunning tracks of land make this infuriating game look ludicrously easy? well, not all of the time.

Jon Abbott and Michelle Wie will share something when they wake up in which ever far-flung hotel they are residing in presently; both will have a headache and a slightly sick, gnawing feeling in the pit of their stomachs as they reflect on a terrible, and perhaps frightening, two days in their chosen careers.

Abbott, who by all accounts is a talented Australian rookie that has already won once and had some good finishes on his debut season, has the horrific and unfair tag of being known across the golfing world as ?that Australian who shot 96?. He has come from nowhere and emerged headlong into the public conscience for all the wrong reasons. Apparently he woke up two days before the Mastercard Masters in Australia and found he had lost his swing. No amount of work could bring it back - it?s gone, temporarily we hope. What a horrid feeling.

A round full of bingo numbers does not make a pretty sight, especially when you follow it up by going through the first five holes of your second round in 14-over-par. After 23 holes of golf, this professional from Victoria was 34-over. It would make you smile, make you feel a little bit better after your Saturday medal, make you reflect that another NR is not so bad, it would do all of these things if it wasn?t quite so sad.

For Michelle Wie (pictured) you suspect things aren?t quite so bleak. However, no matter how well you claim to have played without much luck, or how much you reflect that it can only be good for your game to play on the men?s Tour, no one likes finishing rock bottom. A two-round score of 17-over at the Casio World Open is pretty miserable. Eleven missed cuts in twelve starts on the men?s Tour is telling her something even if she is choosing not to listen.

No doubt Wie will come back stronger - a 17 year-old tends to forget things pretty quickly. However, for Abbott the hard part is to come. He retired with some dignity left yesterday but what thoughts will be going through his head the next time ? if indeed there is a next time ? that he steps up on the first tee. Perhaps he could call any golf club in England on a Saturday morning and get some advice, or at least some sympathy; after all we all know what it feels like.

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