Harrington Knows Understands Discrimination

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PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- With The Masters just two weeks away, many in The Players Championship field have been questioned on their thoughts of Augusta Nationals male-only member policy.
 
Harrington gave his thoughts when prompted Friday.
 
We have a similar situation coming up in Ireland. We have the Irish Open on a golf course that doesnt have lady members, the Dublin native said.
 
Padraig HarringtonNoted as a methodical player, Harrington said: Gone are the days that ladies would play slower or anything like that on a golf course. Most ladies would play quicker than me.
 
But while he said he did not uphold discrimination, he added: I do think that all clubs should decide their own future. Thats the idea of a club.
 
Harrington is a partial member of the Stackstown Golf Club in Dublin. Irish policemen, who were discriminated against in other clubs, built their own and do not allow civilian members.
 
My father was a policeman, explained Harrington as to his affiliation.
 
I can never become a committee member, a voting member or anything like that, he said. I realized that when I joined the club and Im very happy with the situation.
 
My Brothers Cousins Uncle
 
Harrington may be one of the best players in Europe, but to some American fans, hes known as the relative of Detroit Lions quarterback Joey Harrington.
 
I found out about four years ago that I had a second cousin who was a promising footballer, Padraig explained.
 
He said the two havent as of yet met, but were supposed to when Joey followed him around last years Masters Tournament for three and a half rounds.
 
We were due to meet on a Saturday evening, and I double-chipped and two putted the last for a double bogey, so he was very wise to depart. He is as smart as they say he is, Padraig joked about the former Oregon standout.
 
When asked to explain the relationship, Harrington got a bit confused.
 
Our grandparents were brother and sister, I think. I think its my grandfathers sister is his grandmother, I think. Is that right? he wondered aloud.
 
Its likely not. If that were the case it would seem the two Harringtons would have different last names.
 
Whos on the Bag?
 
Craig Perks is in position to become the first man to successfully defend his title at this event, despite having to employ three different caddies this week.
 
Well, Rod (Erb) is my caddie and he caddied for me 15 holes yesterday. When I showed up this morning he wasnt here, so I was fortunate to have a chaplain of the caddies here and he caddied for me the last four holes.
 
Perks used The Rev. George Woods to help him complete his first round Friday morning, which was postponed by rain on Thursday. He then picked up Tony Lingard to loop for him in the second round. Lingard was on site to caddie for first-alternate Aaron Baddeley, who didnt make the field.
 
Perks wouldnt go into detail as to what happened with his regular caddie.
 
We just had an unfortunate situation with Rod, and everything is fine and hell be back on the bag tomorrow.
 
Shark Attack Thwarted
 
Greg Norman and John Huston pulled out Friday. Norman, who shot 78 in the first round, excused himself with a bad back. Huston (79) gave no reason.
 
Norman, who underwent hip surgery two years ago and has suffered periodic back problems for several years, sought treatment last week from University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
 
His UPMC physiotherapist accompanied him to this weeks event.
 
We werent able to make any progress on my back so unfortunately today would have been more of the same, Norman said on his website, shark.com. My plan was to play in a number of events over the next six to eight weeks, and therefore I am quite disappointed with my being forced to withdraw.
 
Norman did not say whether or not he would be able to compete in next weeks BellSouth Classic on the Sugarloaf course he designed.
 
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