Thursday, December 22, 2011

TV scorer review of the Dubai World Championship

I volunteered to be a TV scorer for the recent Dubai World Championship.  I did not really know what to expect, other than knowing the position would have something to do with ensuring the TV coverage was as efficient as possible.

I attended the general volunteers meeting the week before the tournament, as well as the TV scorers meeting the evening before the tournament.  The role of a TV scorer involves following a specific group of players, recording their scores, reporting the playing order for the next shots, and reporting to the controller, if requested, whenever a specific player is about to play a shot.  Of the 29 groups of players at the Dubai World Championship, i.e. 60 players qualified to play, two chose not to attend (Justin Rose and Fredrik Jacobsen) and YE Yang retired during Round 1, TV scorers are only sent out with approximately eight groups, depending on I) the number of people who volunteered to be TV scorers, and II) the groups in which the key players would be playing.

For the first day of the tournament I was assigned to follow the group of Darren Clarke and Simon Dyson.  This worked out quite well as I managed to get the autograph of Darren Clarke on the 2011 Open Championship flag that I purchased over the Internet.  Unfortunately they did not play too well so my day was reasonably relaxed, i.e. given that they were playing poorly there was almost zero TV coverage of them during the round – all I had to do was report the scores for each hole to the TV control room.  Simon Dyson ended up last of the 57 players that made it through the first round, and Darren Clarke was not too far behind him.  After round 1 I was pleased to meet Gerry McIlroy, father of Rory McIlroy, in the clubhouse.

On day two I specifically requested to follow two South Africans that happened to be playing together, Charl Schwartzel, the 2011 US Masters Champion, and Hennie Otto, winner of the 2011 South African Open held a few weeks before the Dubai World Championship.  Both played reasonably well so my day was a little more active than the previous day.  Following the round I was able to catch Charl Schwartzel just as he was leaving the scorers’ tent.  When I attended the US Masters in April this year I returned with two 2011 US Masters flags in the hope of getting one signed by Charl.  He was kind enough to sign the flag with a personalized message to me, as shown in the photo below.

On day three I was assigned the group of Francesco Molinari and Shane Lowry.  This was again a fairly busy day as both players played quite well.

On the final day of the tournament I was assigned the group of Charl Schwartzel and Sergio Garcia.  This proved to be my busiest day, given that Charl was making a move early during the round.  I had to provide shot warnings each time that he played a shot, as well as reporting playing orders and hole scores to the TV control room.  The only hiccup occurred on the 17th hole when, for some reason that remains unexplained, the players switched orders and I was unable to provide the shot warning in time.  According to the scoring on the previous holes, Sergio Garcia had the honor on the 17th hole yet Charl Schwartzel played first, causing confusion in the TV control room and resulting in his tee shot on the 17th hole not being aired.  I did not manage to chat to his caddie to find out why he played out of turn. 

All in all it was a good experience to see what goes on behind the scenes, and being able to walk ‘inside the ropes’.  Despite the numerous blisters on my feet from the 40 km’s that I walked in four days, I enjoyed my time as a TV scorer at the Dubai World Championship.  The tournament ended with a fantastic victory by Alvaro Quiros, a member of my European Tour Fantasy Team for the week.  I was pleased to finish 349th out of more than 20,000 players in the European Tour Fantasy Game at the end of the year.  Not a bad achievement considering that this is the first time that I have taken part in the game.

Once again, congratulations to Luke Donald on leading both the US PGA Tour Money List and the Race to Dubai – this was the first time that a male golfer has lead the money list in the USA and Europe in the same season.  My comments are here.

The day ended with the announcement that once again, from 2012 to at least 2014, the final event of the European Tour Season will be held at the Jumeirah Golf Estates.  I look forward to working again in 2012 as a TV scorer.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Dubai World Championship preview

UPDATE:  According to Ernie Els' diary on his website – here – he will be playing at the Dubai World Championship.  This is GREAT news, especially after his diary last week stated that his season was over for the year, and his schedule of events did not include the Dubai World Championship.  It will be good to see Ernie playing in his third Dubai World Championship – that makes eight South Africans in the field this week.

The Dubai World Championship is upon us.  The Top 60 golfers in the Race to Dubai have been decided and those who are playing in the Dubai World Championship have now arrived in Dubai (I understand that despite qualifying for the year-end event, Ernie Els and Justin Rose have decided not to play in the event (?!)).  I attended both previous Dubai World Championships and am looking forward to this one for a particular reason.  I have volunteered to be a TV scorer for all four days of the tournament.  This will be the first time that I have volunteered at a golf tournament, despite having attended many tournaments in the past.  From the time that I attended the Million Dollar Golf Tournament at Sun City when I was around 12, to when I attended the US Masters earlier this year, my visits to watch world class golf have been many.  For the Dubai World Championship to be played in my home ‘town’ makes it just that little bit more special, and I look forward to what promises to be an excellent week of golf.

I was fortunate to play the Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates just a few weeks ago with the Jiggers Dubai Golf Society, of which I am a member.  The course is in fine condition, with the rough having been left to grow just that little bit longer in anticipation of the best golfers on the European Tour.  I am pleased to see that of the 60 players who qualified to play in the Dubai World Championship, eight of them are South African,  In order on the Race to Dubai, following the Hong Kong Open, they are Charl Schwartzel (4th), Louis Oosthuizen (14th), Thomas Aiken (20th), George Coetzee (27th), Retief Goosen (35th), Jaco Van Zyl (51st) Ernie Els (52nd – though he has elected not to play (?!)), and Hennie Otto (58th).

I look forward to what the week holds, specifically for my role as TV scorer.  I look forward to seeing what goes on behind the scenes, as well as being able to walk the fairways with some of the world's greatest golfers.  It is unlikely to improve my reasonably poor golf skill, but being a TV scorer should be a life highlight.

I will update, if known before arriving at the course, my ARNESTAD on Golf Twitter account with details of the group for which I am scoring.  At the end of the Dubai World Championship I will post a summary of the event.  Enjoy the week, and say nice things about Dubai!!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Donald wins the PGA Tour Money List and the Race to Dubai

Well it has happened.  Luke Donald has won the PGA Tour Money List for 2011.  More than likely, barring some major comeback from his competitors, he will win the Race to Dubai and claim the European Tour Money List as well.  Kind of what I had in mind when I suggested in my post of 25 July that Luke Donald would win the Race to Dubai and the FedEx Cup.  I thought that the FedEx Cup and the PGA Tour Money List were one and the same – I guess not!! 

Side Note – someone needs to please clarify for me, and many other golf fans, the relevance of the FedEx Cup, other than presenting the winner with some huge amount of money where even the players do not really seem to understand what they need to do to win the FedEx Cup.

So with Luke’s win of the PGA Tour Money List he become the first player history to win both the European Tour Money List and the PGA Tour Money List in the same season.  Certainly a remarkable achievement.  And surely a sure bet for PGA Player of the Year?!

What will I remember from Luke’s play in 2011?  I was fortunate to attend the 2011 US Masters.  I attended the full six days of the tournament, including the practice rounds on Tuesday and Wednesday, and the Par 3 competition (that Luke won – and I was at the 9th hole).  In addition, I was on the left side at the 18th hole on the final day when Luke chipped in for par from off the green to remain in contention.  I will remember my trip to the US Masters for many years.

I am now looking forward to the Dubai World Championship to be held in early December.  I have volunteered to be a TV scorer for all four tournament days.  This will be my first time volunteering so I look forward to experiencing what happens behind the scenes and inside the ropes.  Perhaps by some fortunate coincidence I will have the opportunity to walk the fairways with Luke Donald – wouldn’t that be a wonderful opportunity?

So again, WELL DONE to Luke Donald (follow him on Twitter @LukeDonald) for this historical golf achievement – I suspect it will be a long time before, if ever, the achievement is repeated.  See you in Dubai!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Predictions: The 2011 PGA Championship

After a great golfing year so far in 2011, the final major is upon us, the 93rd PGA Championship, taking place at the Atlanta Athletic Club.  Given that 98 of the top 100 players in the world are in the field, or so I heard on CNN the other night, it should be a fantastic tournament.  I was pleased to visit the Atlanta Athletic Club when I drove from Atlanta to Augusta for the US Masters (details here) earlier this year, though I was unable to gain access to the grounds.

I have really struggled to put together my Fantasy Team this week.  With there being so many quality players in the field, having to choose just 15 European golfers proved quite the challenge.  I finally settled on Donald, Fisher, Garcia, Hansen, Hanson, Karlsson, Kaymer, Manassero, McDowell, McIlroy, Molinari, Noren, Rose, Schwartzel, and Westwood.  Unfortunately I had to leave out Ernie Els, Louis Oosthuisen and Retief Goosen, three great South African golfers.  With there being so many other great players in the field this week, choices had to be made.  I am always reluctant to leave South African golfers out of my Fantasy Team, thereby creating a conflict between wanting all South Africans to do well, yet to the detriment of my Fantasy Team.

However, with that having been said, I would dearly like to see Ernie add a PGA Championship to his victories, leaving him just the US Masters to complete a career Grand Slam.  Or how about Louis adding to his 2010 Open Championship, or Retief adding to his 2001 and 2004 US Open Championships, or Trevor Immelman adding to his 2008 US Masters victory?  Even Thomas Aiken has had a good year so far and cannot be ruled out for a good performance this week.  My Fantasy Team for the week is here if you are interested (that this link updates each week as changes are made during the course of the season).

So who do I predict will win this week?  I have a good feeling for Robert Karlsson – he is the winner of the 2010 Race to Dubai and has been playing quite well recently.  Otherwise I am quite happy for another player on the European Tour to claim victory, and so much the better if they are part of my Fantasy Team.  Certainly Luke Donald and Lee Westwood deserve a major, and it would be no surprise if they finally achieved that during the final major of the year.  Ideally the winner will be a player from the ISM stable, allowing Andrew ‘Chubby’ Chandler to win all four majors in 2011.  I would like to see a member of European Tour claim a 7th consecutive major victory, allowing for a clean sweep of majors in 2011, and highlighting the powerful position in which European golf finds itself right now.

Here’s hoping for a most enjoyable 93rd PGA Championship.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Tournament of Hope – South Africa


The Tournament of Hope is a golf tournament proposed to take place in South Africa.  It is planned to occur annually starting in 2012.  The Tournament of Hope will be the fifth World Golf Championship event with a planned purse of USD 10 million.  At its announcement in April 2011 it was richer than any other golf event in the world, even beating the Dubai World Championship in terms of prize money.  The initial contract for the tournament is five years.  This would be the second active World Golf Championships event outside the United States, with the only other one being the HSBC Champions is held in China.

The World Golf Championship events are currently I) The Accenture World Matchplay, II) The Cadillac Championship, III) The Bridgestone Invitational and IV) The HSBC Champions (held in China).

As it is currently planned, the Tournament of Hope will conflict with the Chevron World Challenge hosted by Tiger Woods as well as the Nedbank Golf Challenge (previously the Million Dollar Golf Challenge) held at Sun City each year.

Source:  Wikipedia


Do I think the event will be a success?  Certainly the event will be the highlight of the South African golfing calendar.  It will definitely attract a great number of the world’s greatest golfers.  I have never quite figured out why the Nedbank Golf Challenge only has 12 players in the field.  Perhaps having another more prestigious tournament around the same time will encourage more golfers to visit South Africa around early December.

My comments with respect to the timing of the tournament are as follows:

ONE:  It is planned to be held in early December each year.  This is the time of the year when golfers would prefer to take a Christmas vacation with their families, especially since the PGA season will be well over by that time of the year and the FedEx Cup will have long been decided.  I strongly suspect that many golfers, particularly those based in the United States, will be unlikely to want to travel to South Africa for the tournament.  Sure, South Africa has some fantastic weather at that time of the year.  But why would golfers travel all the way from the United States, just for a four-day event, when they could spend time with their families after a long PGA tour season, and when they could be preparing for the season opening events in Hawaii?

TWO:  As of 2011, the Race to Dubai only wraps up on the 11th of December.  This may conflict with the Tournament of Hope from 2012 unless either the Race to Dubai or the Tournament of Hope changes its date.

THREE:  The first events of the European Tour season take place in South Africa, with the Alfred Dunhill Championship, the South African Open Championship, the Africa Open and the Jo’burg Open each taking place between early December and mid-January.  This should encourage more players from Europe to travel to South Africa.  But it seems that one of the tournaments may have to be moved or canceled depending on how the Tournament of Hope can be slotted in.

FINAL THOUGHTS:  I suspect that the Tournament of Hope will mainly attract players from the European Tour.  I expect that players on the PGA Tour will be unwilling to travel to South Africa for the event.  With the amount of prize money of offer, I do, however, expect that the Tournament of Hope will be a success and a GREAT reflection on the ability of South Africa to host yet another world-class event.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Luke Donald wins the Race to Dubai and the FedEx Cup

What are the chances of this being the headline on the 11th of December at the conclusion of the Race to Dubai, following the Dubai World Championship?  Given the performance of Luke Donald during 2011 there is a reasonably strong possibility of him winning both the Race to Dubai, previously known as the European Tour Order of Merit, and the FedEx Cup, the culmination of the PGA Tour.

As of the time of writing this article, Luke Donald was well ahead in the Race to Dubai rankings, with a lead of € 1.2 million over Charl Schwartzel (after the Nordea Masters in Sweden).  He is currently fifth in the race for the FedEx Cup (after the completion of the RBC Canadian Open).

Victory in the Race to Dubai is all but assured.  So Luke just needs a strong showing in the playoffs of the PGA Tour to capture the FedEx Cup.  That would make the first time in history that one player has captured both the Race to Dubai and the FedEx Cup in one season.

What a remarkable achievement that would be.  I certainly hope that Luke Donald achieves this goal.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Review – 2011 Open Championship

Well the Open Championship has come and gone for another year.  Despite the weather, the organizers pulled of yet another successful staging of golf’s third major of the year.  CONGRATULATIONS to Darren Clarke for a GREAT victory.  Who would have thought that there would be three different players from Northern Ireland as the five most recent major winners?  So my prediction was a little off in terms of the overall winner, but at least I got the country of origin of the winner correct. J  Also I was pleased to see yet another major winner from the European Tour, despite a strong showing from Phil Mickelson during the early stages of the round yesterday.

However, I was most disappointed to see most of the favored players eliminated by means of the cut.  I find it strange that the cut would come with a difference of just eight strokes between the leader and the first group of golfers eliminated.  As was shown by Phil Mickelson during the first 10 holes yesterday, it is very possible to make up four or five strokes (or even six in his case) in a day, yet the tournament organizers chose to eliminate most of the better known players by means of the cut.  I think specifically of Lee Westwood, Graeme McDowell, Ross Fisher, Padraig Harrington and Peter Hanson who were all eliminated by the cut on +4.  Sure, everyone knows the rules when they enter the Championship but I fail to understand why players within 10 strokes of the leader/s are not included in the final field for the weekend.  Certainly in such a case there is a potential for a large field during the final rounds, but then why not have a second cut after the third round?

Congratulations go to South African golfer George Coetzee who finished in 15th position.  I am pleased to have picked him for my European Tour Fantasy Team this week.  But who would have picked George Coetzee to be the leading South African at the 140th Open Championship?  Very few people I am sure.  I for one will be watching with interest as his career progresses.

I am now looking forward to the 93rd PGA Championship in August, to be held at the Atlanta Athletic Club.  I was at the front entrance to the Atlanta Athletic Club’s Eastlake Golf Club (the permanent home of the Tour Championship that decides the FedEx Cup) on my drive from Atlanta to Augusta for the US Masters.  Unfortunately I could not get into the golf course to visit their ProShop and neither was there a sign at the entrance in front of which I could stand to at least have a photo at the location.  I am hoping that during the PGA Championship my Fantasy Team will not be obliterated like it was during the Open Championship J.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Predictions: The 2011 Open Championship

Well it’s that time of the year again – the Open Championship.  Having attended the 2010 Open Championship at St Andrews I am excited to see yet another installment of this great event.  I suspect the spectators have already made a serious dent into the stock at the Merchandising Pavilion, having stocked up with hats, balls, ball markers, etc… (all the same items that I stocked up with at the 2010 Open Championship).  Perhaps they have even secured the autographs of a few of their favorite players, like I was able to do in 2010 with the autograph of Sir Nick Faldo on my 2010 Open Championship flag.

So what is my prediction for the Open Championship?  I, like many others, favor Rory McIlroy to be the winner.  At the beginning of 2011 I picked him to win a major this year, though did not record this anywhere.  So even though his win at the US Open fulfilled my prediction, that prediction is not recorded before the year’s majors.  It’s always possible to have 20 / 20 hindsight so now I record my predictions for the 2011 Open Championship.  So I say come Sunday evening it will be Rory that will be the 2011 Open Champion.

As part of my European Tour Fantasy Team for the Open Championship you may be surprised to hear that I have selected neither Louis Oosthuizen, the defending Open Champion, nor Charl Schwartzel, the US Masters Champion.  I do, however, have three other South Africans in my team for this week – Ernie Els, Retief Goosen and George Coetzee.  I have not included Louis – I have a feeling he will miss the cut this week.  He has nothing to prove having won the Open Championship in the past.  Also with Charl playing mainly on the US PGA Tour and not having played much links golf recently I have a feeling he will either miss the cut or be low down in the field.  Not that I would wish that to be the case – it’s just the way I chose to make my team selections this week.

However, George Coetzee, an up and coming South African golfer, has been playing really well over the past few weeks.  He was tied for third at the Barclays Scottish Open this past week, and had a good week before that as well.  Having had good practice on the links course at Castle Stuart, and being in good form recently, I chose to include him in my Fantasy Team this week.

For the record, my full Fantasy Team this week are:  Ernie Els (has won the Open Championship in the past and his weekly diary says he enjoys links golf), Retief Goosen (South African, played lots of links golf in the past and finished tied 10th in the previous Open Championship held at this course), Martin Kaymer (World Number 3), Rory McIlroy (mentioned above), Graeme McDowell (World Number 9, has played extensive links golf), Lee Westwood (World Number 2 – he is certainly due a major victory), Edoardo Molinari, Ross Fisher, Padraig Harrington (previous winner of the Open Championship, and he had a good week at Castle Stuart), Peter Hanson (generally a member of my Fantasy Team), Paul Casey (not usually in my Fantasy Team, but he played really well in the 2010 Open Championship so I believe he has a thing to prove), Luke Donald (who would be so brave as to omit the World Number 1 and the winner at Castle Stuart?), Justin Rose, Sergio Garcia (his form has improved a great deal recently) and George Coetzee (mentioned above).

GOOD LUCK to all European Tour Players – let’s hope this major will be the sixth major in a row won by a member of the European Tour (the last major won by a member of the US PGA Tour was the 2010 US Masters won by Phil Mickelson).  I look forward to seeing a member of the European Tour holding aloft the claret jug as winner of the 2011 Open Champion at Royal St Georges.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Huxley Associates Golf Days

I have been fortunate to attend all four of the Huxley Associates Golf days held to date.  Huxley Associates is an international recruitment consultancy operating in the Middle East, Europe, North America, South America, Asia and Australia.  From their Dubai office they provide bespoke recruitment services to the following sectors: I) Banking and Finance, II) Energy and Natural Resources, III) Engineering, IV) Human Resources, V) IT and VI) Legal.

The golf days provide an excellent networking opportunity for high-ranking business professionals based across the United Arab Emirates, not only on the golf course but at the lunch arranged afterwards.  The events are always well attended and I for one look forward to the events months in advance.  The golf days are expertly organized, with a smattering of professionals across industry lines in attendance.  Huxley Associates go out of their way to ensure that the weather always performs to its peak as well.  J

As they say, ‘a bad day on the golf course is always better than a good day in the office’.  I look forward to being invited to attend Huxley Associates golf days going forward, and to meeting my fellow golfing colleagues.  In addition, I look forward to working with Huxley Associates again in the future should the opportunity present itself.  If you are looking for a recruitment consulting firm operating in the above-mentioned areas of expertise, please feel free to contact Huxley Associates.

NOTE:  I work too with other recruiting firms, though have yet to partake in any of their golf days (not sure whether they even arrange golf days).

At the Huxley Associates Golf Day of 2 June 2011, held at the Jumeirah Golf Estates (Fire Course)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Golfers' Autographs

This is my experience with seeking the autographs of various professional golfers, and specifically the three golfers mentioned below.  I collect autographs for myself only, rather than with the intention of selling them on E-bay, etc… I have never been a particularly keen autograph seeker, at least not since I moved out of childhood.  However, in recent times, I have had the opportunity to request the autographs of various players.  My experiences are detailed below.


I attended the 2011 US Masters Par 3 competition.  I was pleased to be able to obtain the autographs of numerous professional golfers.  It should be noted that I will frame the large US Masters flag for my personal collection rather than trying to sell it on E-bay.  Most of the players were only too willing to sign the large flag, and some of them even made polite conversation with the fans.  WELL DONE to the golfers that made an effort to interact with their fans in such a way.  It was only Jhonattan Vegas with whom I had a problem, detailed under Comment 3 below.


When I lived in Saudi Arabia I was part of a golfing group called the “20 Club”.  I mentioned that I would be attending the 2006 Qatar Masters golf tournament in Doha.  In order to raise funds for a local charity event I was given a golf shirt from the Arizona Golf Resort Pro Shop and asked to obtain the autographs of various players.  Fortunately Aletta and I managed to obtain numerous autographs and the players were generally only too pleased to sign the shirt.  However, Vijay Singh was nothing short of a pain when it came to requesting autographs.  Not only was he extremely rude to the various children that asked him to sign golf balls, but people had to chase after him to receive his autograph.  He refused to sign golf balls for the children, even throwing them away when they were presented to him for signature. 

Shame on you, Vijay, and the way that you treated those kids that look up to you for your golfing ability.  Given that this was in 2006 I certainly hope you are no longer like this.  Aletta only managed to get your autograph after she followed you for five minutes after you came off the 18th green and were on your way to the putting green.  Shame on you for making your fans run after you.  Surely you could spare just five minutes at the end of the round to sign a few autographs rather than being such a pain and making it really difficult for your admirers to obtain your autograph?  Come on Vijay, these are just kids.  Is this really the kind of attitude you want to convey to your admiring fans?

Unfortunately this kind of behavior seems to be a character trait of Vijay.  One needs to just do a search on Google for Vijay Singh to read many negative articles that have been written about him over the years, including negative reactions to reporters and a range attendant that was trying to be helpful.  Oh well, perhaps one day he will realize the position he is in to positively influence his many fans, rather than going out of his way to be unpleasant.


As noted above, I attended the 2011 US Masters Par 3 competition.  Players generally congregate around the 9th green after their round and sign autographs for the children and adults.  Even the likes of the greats Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and South African Gary Player made time to greet fans and sign autographs.  However, Jhonatthan Vegas refused to sign a single autograph and just walked off the course as if he is God’s gift to the world of golf.  Even those fans from Venezuela, his home country, were refused an autograph. 

Shame on you ‘Johnny Vegas’.  What makes you think you can act this way?  You are not even a superstar!!  OK, so you have won one tournament on the PGA Tour.  So have many other golfers, most of whom are friendly and appreciative of their fans.

You lost a fan (me) that day by your blatant disregard for your fans.  One can only hope that you will change and appreciate that without the fans you would be nowhere.


I can somewhat sympathize with Tiger Woods not wanting to sign autographs.  As the world’s number 1 golfer for many years, everyone wants a piece of Tiger.  I attended the golf clinic hosted by Tiger Woods and others during the Dubai Desert Classic on 1 February 2008.  Following the clinic he was whisked away, while spending less than one minute signing autographs.  I suppose such an event has the potential to become a long and challenging evening, especially seeing Tiger in Dubai so infrequently, and given the number of supporters that Tiger has in the Middle East that would love his autograph.  However, I do believe that a few more autographs for his fans would be appreciated.  Even if he apologizes nicely after a few minutes of signing autographs saying he has another engagement, I am sure his fans would be more impressed, and regard him in greater favor.

I for one would love Tiger Woods’ autograph to complete my signatures on my 2010 Open Championship flag from St Andrews – so far I have the autographs of Sir Nick Faldo (obtained at St Andrews), Louis Oosthuizen (obtained at the Dubai World Championship in 2010) and John Daly (obtained during the 2011 US Masters).  It is just Tiger Woods that I would love to have sign my flag to complete the flag for winners of the Open Championship at St Andrews in recent years.


As a final thought, I would like to thank the many professional golfers that go out of their way to appreciate their fans – that’s what keeps us interested in the game.  We really only support the players that we like and respect.  Players like those mentioned above will never have my support.