Fellow Australian professional Steve Bowditch has launched a passionate defence of Adam Scott after public criticism of his decision to skip the Olympic golf tournament.
Bowditch said his fellow Queenslander had “nothing to prove to any of us” with many lashing the 2013 Masters champion’s choice to make himself unavailable to play in Rio in August, citing clashing personal and professional commitments.
Scott was joined overnight by former Open champion Louis Oosthuizen, who expressed similar sentiments about his decision not to play for South Africa.
“Adam’s hard work, dedication and lifetime of sweat and pain has made him into one of our great sportsmen,” Bowditch said in rare but passionate Facebook address signed off with the hashtag #leaveAdamAlone.
“Therefore, he has earned the right to make any decision he chooses. If he doesn't want to play, so be it!
“Who are we are to ridicule a guy who not only is one of the most stand-up, grateful and nicest guys you will ever meet, but to now question his beliefs and integrity is absolutely a disgrace.
“If (Jordan) Spieth and others choose to play, they have earned that right to make that decision, too.
“People are knocking a guy that should be last in line for being knocked. He has just as much love for the game and his country as anyone.
“Just because it's other people's dreams to compete in the Olympics or think it would be an experience that no one would want to miss doesn't mean he has to think that way.
“Get off Adam's back … (he) doesn't deserve it one bit.”
Bowditch cited Scott’s reaction when he made the putt on the 72nd hole at Augusta National as a pointer to his true feelings towards his homeland.
“Doesn't anyone remember that moment at Augusta when he made that putt on the last hole?” he wrote.
“The place that has been a curse in sport for our country since time began, the one that stopped the nation early one Monday morning?
“In that moment of pure adrenaline and screaming emotions, he could have bellowed anything (such as), `Yes!!’ or screamed, `Adam!!!".
“But in that moment where no one can even begin to imagine the excitement and scattered thoughts he had running through his mind, he screamed, `C’mon AUSSIE!!!!".
“If that there is not one of the most single-handed most selfless comments ever made towards pride in this country, I don't know what is."