Tuesday, October 15

VIDEO: Golf Legend Tony Jacklin on BBC's 'Strictly Come Dancing'

TWO-TIME MAJOR CHAMPION AND RYDER CUP hero Tony Jacklin, 69, still has plenty of guts and passion. Jacklin was a celebrity dancer on "Strictly Come Dancing," a popular BBC show in its 11th season. America's "Dancing With the Stars" spun off (no pun intended) from "Strictly."

Jacklin took some ribbing from the media. "Did he need the money?" asked Des Lynam of The Telegraph. "Surely not. Was he clutching at another run at fame? I cannot imagine."

Not surprisingly, Jacklin was the first dancer to leave this season. He said he had no regrets. "I gave it my best shot but it was not good enough. ... It was a wonderful time and a wonderful few weeks."

At GeoffShackelford.com, commenters were mostly kind to Jacklin.

The Pro from Dover: "Living life! What is wrong with that? Go Tony, go! Bet it took more guts going on this show than making a 3 footer on the last hole of a major!"

RES: "Good for him. I'm sure he had a great time. Beats complaining about the distance the ball goes, denigrating Tiger's level of competition and looking for design work in Timbuktu, which is what most 70 year old pros do for fun."

At The Telegraph (online), telegraphtattle said: "Yes, he's an older contestant and struggled with the energy required, but he was a good sport and certainly didn't embarrass himself as Des [Lynam] suggests. TJ is much loved by his fans and the golfing world and will always be held in high esteem."

I've gotten to know Tony during the last couple of years. When I talked to him in August, he told me he was going to do the show. I wasn't too surprised. I admire Tony's go-for-it attitude. Without that mindset, the truck driver's son from Scunthorpe would never have become a golf champion.

(Visor tip: Geoff Shackelford)

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