TIGER WOODS will find himself under the microscope when he plays with Lothians star Stephen Gallacher in the Dubai Desert Classic ‘Champions’ Challenge.
It will be the first time Gallacher has played with world No.1 Woods in the professional ranks, their paths having last crossed in the 1995 Walker Cup in Wales.
With former Masters champion Fred Couples also in the group in the 18-hole event on Tuesday week, it’s a dream draw for the Bathgate man in an event marking the 25th staging of the Dubai tournament.
“I’ll be watching Tiger to see why he’s the world No 1,” Gallacher told the Evening News as he prepared for this week’s HSBC Abu Dhabi Championship.
“Is it his attitude, does he play a different course management, does he hit it further, does he hit it higher, does he putt better, does he chip better? I know that Chris Wood enjoyed playing with him in the WGC event at Firestone last year. He said that Tiger hit a couple of shots in particular that were amazing.”
Just as exciting for Gallacher, though, is the opportunity to play with Couples, one of his boyhood idols.
“Freddie is a legend in the game,” added the 39-year-old, who earned his spot in a 20-man field competing for $600,000 with a three-shot win in last year’s Dubai Desert Classic.
“Our generation don’t get many chances to play with him as he mainly plays on the Champions Tour these days.
“I remember watching him win The Masters and contending in majors when I was a kid. I also remember going up to watch the Dunhill Cup when it was a team event and one year I think the American team was him, Payne Stewart and Davis Love. He’s such a cool customer. He’s also got a timeless and effortless swing and it will be great to play with him.”