I know, in a small way, what it is like to be disappointed for years at missing out in a big golf tournament. In 2002 I went to Sydney to play golf in the Gay Games. At the final hole, a par 3, I needed a 3 to win the silver medal. I took a 5. Not only did I not win silver, but I also missed the bronze medal on countback. I was gutted.
It was only years later, when I won a medal at Eurogames in Antwerp, that I was able to put the disappointment behind me.
Dareen Clarke has played professional golf at a high level for 20 years. During that time he has watched as lesser golfers won major championships. He came close on many occasions, but he never did. Now, at 42, it was surely too late.
Last week I was at Castle Stuart near Inverness to see Darren Clarke and others compete in the Scottish Open. I took this photo of Darren.
This week the Open Championship took place at Royal St Georges near Sandwich. And amazingly, as the top golfers in the world failed to stay at the top of the leaderboard, Darren took the lead with one round to play. And even more amazingly, despite huge pressure, he held on through 18 holes of the final round to win the tournament and become a Major winner at long last. So occasionally nice guys do come first. Well done Darren. Fantastic.