Gareth Bale earned the nickname ‘The Golfer’ during his time at Real Madrid, as he often found himself occupying a place on the bench and struggled to find his form at the Santiago Bernabeu. His apparent obsession with golf resulted in a lot of derision from his own supporters, who even mocked him.
Bale stated in an interview with the EAL podcast, “I am uncertain about their rationale as I have consulted with medical professionals and they have all approved of it. Many individuals take issue with me engaging in golf.” The media holds the belief that it is unfavorable for me. If I participate in a golf game two days prior to a match, it is met with confusion.” Whereas, Steph Curry occasionally plays in the morning before a game.”
Despite facing criticism, Wales showed great sportsmanship when they qualified for Euro 2020. In fact, they went as far as displaying a banner with the slogan, ‘Wales. Golf. Madrid. In that sequence.’
Bale expressed his satisfaction with the nickname bestowed upon him by Thibaut Courtois in 2019, stating, “I am an avid golfer. Have you not observed the photographs?” Additionally, he enthusiastically remarked, “It is an exceptional nickname. To be completely truthful, I am extremely pleased with it.”
GOAL takes a closer look at the legend’s handicap in Wales, and it turns out he is quite skilled. In fact, he has even signed up to play in the Pro-Am Tour PGA event in 2023, showcasing his well-documented passion for golf.
In 2020, during a match at Santander Golf in Madrid, a pair of players, Lang Anders and Erik, engaged in a conversation where Lang revealed that his handicap had gradually improved to “four or three.” Bale, playing with a handicap of two in golf, was preparing for the late 2022 game.
Despite not being a scratch golfer, he is still quite good, which means that the amateur golfer from Wales has an above-average handicap of two, making him a star.
In 2015, the Daily Express reported that the forward had a “six” respectable handicap and that playing time in places such as California and Madrid helped to improve him.
Does it seem unlikely that unwinding helps him, as he has been stressed? Although he truly enjoys playing a lot, it is evident that he needs to play more in order to improve.
I really enjoy playing football, and it’s something that a lot of people also enjoy. There is nothing wrong with having a hobby like golf. In 2019, Bale explained, “Golf is a hobby that anyone else can have, just like any other hobby. I always give my best and I’m paid to do it. Football is my number one sport.”
“It helps me stay more relaxed outside of the field and provides me with a break from soccer, which is enjoyable.”
Indeed, now that he has retired officially from playing, he will be able to devote even more time to honing his swing.