Kevin Na is so often mocked and maligned for slow play that responding to every detractor on this front would likely break a regular man’s sanity, but there’s one critic Na felt he had to address.
The PGA Tour player was chided earlier this week by cricket legend Kevin Pietersen for taking an interminable amount of time on a “tap-in” for par at the par-4 second during the final round of the Genesis Open.
Pietersen decided that wasn’t enough either. He furthered the mocking by offering a “demonstration” in how to properly hit a “tap-in.”
The fact that Pietersen recently announced he will soon retire from all forms of cricket probably plays a role in him having some free time to go after Na.
Whatever the case, Pietersen has millions of followers and plenty of cache. After Pietersen’s multiple snipes at Na, the one-time PGA Tour winner decided staying silent wasn’t an option.
Na took to Instagram to explain why Pietersen’s criticism was unfair. First, he noted – with evidence – that the putt was 3’4,” which is certainly not a tap-in.
He added that the difference between one stroke on that Sunday could’ve been $300,000 (his finish of T-2 rather than a T-4). Na also pointed out that he and his group were on pace all day.
Here’s his full response:
@kp24 lets get some facts straight. Shot tracker shows what u call “tap in” 3ft 4in. Since when is 3’4’’ on green speed 12 a “tap in.” FYI 1 shot for me on Sunday was 300k. Difference between T2 and T4. Yes, I did back off because the line didn’t feel right. So what! BTW that was the only putt I backed off all day. Also our group was on pace all day! We waited if anything. @pgatour @golfdigest @golf_com @golfchannel #getyourfactstraight #sticktoyourownsport #everyshotcounts
It’s definitely a well-reasoned retort. And his point about the fact this wasn’t a tap-in is pretty unimpeachable. You can be the best putter in the world, but a 3’4″ putt is not a tap-in for anyone.
Was Pietersen swayed by Na’s impassioned response? Uhh, no.
So the battle of the Kevins is alive and well. Who are you siding with?