A Christmas wish list for a few who make golf great

IAN HUTCHINSON, TORONTO SUN

, Last Updated: 2:12 PM ET

The golfers were nestled all warm in their beds, while visions of birdies danced in their heads.

It's Christmas Eve and Santa is making a list and checking it twice. Here's hoping you find under the tree that hybrid club or high MOI driver you've been asking for so those birdies come more frequently than Santa.

There have been some well-known names who have been naughty or nice too and here is what they can expect to find in their stockings this year.

- Mike Weir: Forget it. Christmas already came early for Weir with his victory over Tiger Woods in Presidents Cup singles, a late-season win and a new, lucrative sponsorship deal, so Santa will leave the gift-giving to Bricia and the kids. With the way Weir's swing changes kicked in, it looks to be a Happy New Year too.

- Stephen Ames: Early release from detention in charm school. With his record of politically incorrect statements, you have to admire Ames' tell-it-like-it-is style, but he took the high road when he was left off the International team for the Presidents Cup. It was predetermined that Weir would be the Canadian rep.

- Jon Mills: A pair of binoculars to help him see past Friday afternoons at PGA Tour events and see the big picture. In his first go-round on tour, Mills pressured himself just to make the cut instead of just concentrating on his game, a common malady for newcomers. He will have to beat that in his second coming.

- Lorie Kane: A new transmission to help her change course. The former top Canadian on the LPGA Tour has been stuck in reverse the past few years and moving forward is getting more difficult with all of the young stars out there.

- Michelle Wie: New brakes because she has been moving way too fast and her handlers have finally realized that by taking her out of men's events for 2008. Wie is definitely one of the characters to watch. Hopefully, her maturity can catch up with all of that natural talent.

- Alena Sharp: The new top Canadian on the LPGA Tour is stuck going forward, which isn't a bad direction for a 26-year-old. It's going on seven years since a Canadian won, so a pair of cushioned insoles for Sharp's golf shoes seem appropriate for the big steps she could be taking in her career in 2008.

- Annika Sorenstam: A lump of coal for wiggling out of the CN Canadian Women's Open in Edmonton. There was already a star-studded field, but Sorenstam found a loophole in the LPGA Tour's rule that requires each player to participate in every tournament on the schedule at least once every four years.

- Meg Mallon: Honorary Canadian citizenship for her efforts and goodwill as an American promoting the LPGA Tour event in this country.

- CN: More players with Mallon's attitude, although most seem to be responding to the way CN has raised the tournament's stature to one of the premier events on tour. It should return to being a major.

- RBC: A copy of CN's guide to being an outstanding sponsor, so the men's Canadian Open can turn around as quickly as the Canadian Women's Open did under CN's watch.

- Tiger Woods: A GPS system to help him find Canada. Has anyone else wondered if Woods' loss to Weir in Presidents Cup singles might be his last competitive round in this country with the way he blows off the Canadian Open each year? Of course, corporate gigs are always a possibility.

- Davis Love III: Normally a class act, he also gets a lump of coal for taking considerable coin to prepare the Angus Glen North Course for the Canadian Open, then blowing off a tournament that can use all the big names it can get.

- Scott Simmons: A flak jacket. Mind you, the new executive director of the Royal Canadian Golf Association hasn't stepped on any land mines yet and his stock has risen since RBC took sponsorship of the Canadian Open, but this is the RCGA and the critics are always ready to launch an assault.

- To those who rant that golf is not a sport: A PGA Tour card to showcase their skills and make a ton of dough. That experience might help you see past alleged "real" athletes such as Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens.


Videos

Photos