Forecaddie: Adding mixed-team event to 2020 Olympics would be golden

Olympics: Golf-Women's Individual Rob Schumacher/USA TODAY Sports

Forecaddie: Adding mixed-team event to 2020 Olympics would be golden

Forecaddie

Forecaddie: Adding mixed-team event to 2020 Olympics would be golden

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While the format is set for the 2020 Olympics, the Forecaddie thinks it’s never too early to beat the drum for change. (Or pray for a last-minute addition.)

Justin Thomas says it’s hard to argue with the format given that Justin Rose, Henrik Stenson and Matt Kuchar earned medals on the men’s side. The three female medalists – Inbee Park, Lydia Ko and Shanshan Feng – were equally legit.

“I would say the fact that those three finished in order, three of the best players, it speaks for itself,” Thomas told The Man Out Front. “You don’t need to do anything crazy, it’s just golf. Let us go out there and play.”

But what about adding to what’s already there?

“I think the Olympics is all about country and team,” said Australia’s Minjee Lee. “Just like tennis does individual and doubles, you just play your own game and then two people’s aggregate score becomes your team score.”

Brooke Henderson agrees, noting that swimming gives out multiple medals every night.

Why can’t golf have more than three per gender over the course of four days?

For those players who are out of the individual medal race, Ko said having a team event gives them something else to play for deep in the competition.

“I would love if there was a team format,” the Kiwi told TMOF. “Whether it might be an extra couple days or match play or just combined, I don’t really know.”

Recent Arkansas grad Maria Fassi revels in a team environment more than flying solo.

“I actually played in the Youth Olympics and we had a mixed team event, which was even cooler,” said Fassi. In that case, the men’s and women’s event followed the individual tournament.

At the Tokyo Games next summer, the men’s tournament begins July 30 – 53 weeks from Tuesday – at Kasumigaseki Country Club and the women begin their competition Aug. 5.

Lee went so far as to say that a team competition is more in line with the Olympic spirit. If you think about it, few sports go without it. Gwk

(Note: This story appears in the July issue of Golfweek.)

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