Ian Poulter, ‘Overachiever’

Ian Poulter, ‘Overachiever’ 1
Ian Poulter (Allison)

IAN POULTER, FLASHY RYDER CUPPER but majorless, is actually a major overachiever, wrote Golfweek’s Alistair Tait earlier this week. I had forgotten about Poulter’s humble golf beginnings, if I ever knew them. I honestly can’t remember.

Tait’s reporting on Robert Rock’s new deal with Emirates Palace Hotel in Abu Dhabi sparked an overachiever list.

“Rock’s transformation from one-time driving-range pro to world star got me thinking about what a massive overachiever he is,” Tait wrote, “and wondering who else in Europe goes under that tag. Not surprisingly, it got me pondering the underachievers too.”

Poulter topped the overachiever list. Tait on the man from Hitchin:

The dapper Englishman turned professional when he was a 4-handicapper. He had no amateur record to speak of because his parents couldn’t afford to finance summers playing the amateur circuit. He served as an assistant professional for years, selling chocolate bars, tees and balls to handicap golfers. He’s reached the top through self-confidence and a sheer desire to win, going from complete nobody to one of the game’s most recognized players.

Can you imagine turning pro as a 4?

Rounding out Tait’s top five European overachievers are Rock, Damien McGrane, Paul McGinley and Christian Cevaer.

Tait also lists his top five European underachievers. You can read it here.

Photo of author
Neil Sagebiel

2 thoughts on “Ian Poulter, ‘Overachiever’”

  1. Yes Robert Rock in particular was virtually a nobody just over 12 months ago. I don't think anyone had heard of him or even where he had come from.

    Now he has won a golf tournament featuring the some of the world's best golfers.

  2. Turning pro at 4 is not unusual. A 4 handicap is the upper limit of the qualification requirements for the PGA in Britain. You will still need to pass the 36 hole playing exam but you can register and study the courses.

    I personally think Poulter deserves credit for what he has achieved. He is prove that with hard work there is opportunity for everyone.


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