The Sunday Paper Review discussed Ireland's place in the golf world
The Sunday Paper Review covered the main talking points from this week's stories as Ian O'Riordan and Declan Lynch joined Joe Molloy on Off the Ball.
With the Open Championship dominating sports coverage this week, the stature of golf in the Irish pysche came up for discussion.
"Golf has a natural tendency to defend itself just like any kind of corporate institution," Lynch told Molloy, adding: "The instinct is to always not mention things, not say things and also to indulge in endless self-praise.
"So they're always complementing each other about the great spirit of the game, players calling penalties on themselves and so forth.
"But just the culture where you can have certain tournaments in America, where a member of the armed forces is standing there, holding the flag on the 17th, everybody is obliged to pass him and say 'thank you for your service'.
"The day that one golfer goes past him and says 'I love what your doing but however I didn't totally agree with the Iraq thing' - he will never play golf again in that country!
"It's (golf) a classic example of the rich do try to possess anything that's good. There is the physical symbolism of it. Look at these courses in America where they're all festooned with mansions, and I don't mean really big houses, I mean vast palatial dwellings - they make the K-Club look like a little estate in Nenagh!
"It's this big time, uber-capitalism and yet Ireland has a genuine genius for golf. If you could make the world into a what sort of what parts are suited for certain things - Ireland would be the golf course. Ireland is essentially the golf course of the world.
"People who play golf in Ireland are probably the type of people who don't play golf anywhere else. Almost every taxi driver I have ever met, plays golf. It's very interesting as a cultural thing that more people in Ireland across all social strata play golf across maybe in any other country. And, we are very good at it as a result and why not? We've some great courses."