Forget being a golfer, caddies have the cash
Posted Thursday, July 26 2012 at 20:03
Last week was a big week for professional golf around the world. The oldest Major Championship, the Open, was staged at Royal Lytham & St. Annes Golf Course— Lancashire, England, and although South Africa’s Ernie Els won his second Claret Jug, it is the collapse of Aussie Adam Scott that made headlines.
Tiger Woods was average throughout the Open, but he is well on his way to becoming the top golfer in the world. He is currently second, behind Luke Donald, who was lacklustre at Royal Lytham.
Back home, at the Karen Country Club, Anthony Murage triumphed over Clive Davis and Gen (Rtd) Peter Waweru to claim the Stroke Play Club Championship Trophy. Well done Mr Murage.
But this weekend, I want to focus on the people who do quite a bit of work in golf and often get no mention, the caddies.
I would also like to make the point, that I would rather be a higher earning caddy than a starving golf professional; here is why.
Ernie Els, the Big Easy, had caddy Ricci Roberts on his bag; Ricci, an old hand in caddying, with over 60 victories to his name, including Els’ two victories at the US Open and now the Open, making his a multiple major winner.
Speaking to ESPN.COM, Roberts said winning Majors is as important to the caddies as it is to the players. “Winning Majors is key to caddies; you get judged by what you won, and majors are at the top of that. If you win a major you certainly do move up the pecking order.”
The Els-Roberts relationship has been rocky at times, with Els firing Roberts a few times – “next time, I’m going to sack him,” the caddie joked recently– but he has never been short of work, even without Els’ helpful habit of asking him back every time.
With Els earning 900, 000 pounds, Roberts walked away with approximately 15 per cent of that (135,000 sterling pounds or Sh18.3 million.
Not bad for four days work. Caddies generally earn about $1,000 (Sh84,000) per day, plus expenses. Do you want to be a caddy yet?
At the Open, there was another “special caddy”, Manchester City striker , Carlos Tevez, who caddies for Romero.
Commenting on the experience, Teves said that it was a memorable experience. “The chance to walk along the course and be around these great players is a pleasure and something unforgettable,” Tevez said.
“I couldn’t give any advice about the slopes but I just carried the bag and supported him each hole. Andres is a professional and he knows everything already, we worked together very well.” Whilst Tevez is a 13-handicap golfer, most of the other caddies on tour are scratch golfers or professional golfers themselves.
According to the Professional Caddies Association (yes, the Caddies have an association almost as large as the Tour itself) caddying is a serious profession.
Caddies like Damon Green, who has carried Zach Johnson’s bag since 2004, started out as pro golfers, but switched over.