News 12 First at Five, April 7, 2010
AUGUSTA---Wednesday of Masters Week is the day the Augusta National chairman takes questions from the media. Billy Payne faced reporters today to talk about a variety of things, including Tiger Woods. When Payne took up that subject, it was reminiscent of something a father would say to his son.
"He disappointed all of us, and more importantly our kids and our grandkids," Payne said. "His future will never again be measured against par, but measured by the sincerity of his efforts to change."
Woods returned to the Masters with questions to answer about how he plays the game of golf and the game of life. And the chairman of Augusta National was also thinking about all the kids lining the fairways this week. He said he wanted Tiger to know that with fame and fortune comes responsibility for a Masters champion.
In the end, Payne says it's about the future of the game of golf itself--in other words, about the young people.
"Our hero did not live up to the expectations of the role model we saw for our children," he said.
Those expectations come right along with a championship Tiger has managed to win four times.
"I hope he can come to understand that life's greatest rewards are reserved for those who bring joy to the lives of other people," Payne said.
Before coming back to Augusta, Tiger himself was wondering whether he could ever do that again, but the galleries this week have already answered that question.
"We at Augusta (National) hope and pray that our great champion will begin his new life here tomorrow in a positive, hopeful and constructive manner--but this time with a significant difference from the past," Payne said.
Payne says that difference is Tiger Woods doing it not just for himself, but for all of us who believe in second chances.
Payne also mentioned that security at Augusta National is tight out of concern for any disruptions, but was quick to say the club is not threatened by what he called "big news stories".
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