The 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro will mark the return of golf after a 108 year absence this summer and as the anticipation builds, four time Gold medallist Sir Matthew Pinsent had some inspiring words for the ‘would be’ Olympic players this summer.
Speaking during the Abu Dhabi Invitational at Yas Links on Sunday, Pinsent spoke about what it means to take part in an Olympic Games as an athlete.
“It’s very special being part of something that is bigger than your sport in its totality and that’s really what the Olympics is about,” said one of Great Britain’s greatest Olympians.
Thorbjorn Olesen, the 2015 Alfred Dunhill Links Champion, is hopeful of representing his native Denmark this summer and reflected on how watching the games growing up has inspired him.
“You grew up watching the Olympics and watching people win Gold medals,” he said. “To be standing there with one of them would be pretty awesome so it’s definitely something I would love to achieve.”
The 2015 Race to Dubai winner Rory McIlroy believes that golf’s return to the Olympics will provide a platform for the game to be viewed by a wider sporting audience.
“It put’s our sport on a bigger stage,” he commented. “People who do not necessarily watch golf are going to watch it because it’s in the Olympics.
“To broadcast golf to a wider to a wider audience, I think it is going to be fantastic.”
Drawing on his success as the 2014 Ryder Cup captain, Paul McGinley will be one of Team Ireland’s leaders at this summer’s games and he believes that golf must embrace the opportunity to promote the game on a global stage.
“It’s important, we want to grow the game. We’ve got a chance to participate in the biggest event in sport, the Olympics. It’s important we embrace that as a sport, men’s and ladies so we can help promote and grow the game.”
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