Sport Golf

Sunday 21 July 2019

US Open runner-up to Tiger Woods reveals that he drank alcohol while playing in PGA Tour events

Rocco Mediate came second to Tiger Woods at the 2008 US Open. (Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
Rocco Mediate came second to Tiger Woods at the 2008 US Open. (Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)

Veteran PGA Tour golfer Rocco Mediate has revealed that at times he drank alcohol during rounds while playing in tournaments.

Mediate, who won six PGA Tour events during his career, is best remembered for a famous US Open duel with Tiger Woods, with the latter winning his 18th major following a dramatic 18-hole playoff at Torrey Pines in 2008.

In an interview with the golf channel, Mediate revealed that after suffering from extensive back issues, he used alcohol to help deal with the pain.

The 56-year-old hasn't drank since October 2017 but admitted that at times during his career he consumed alcohol while playing.

"Absolutely I have," he said.

"Because it was just normal for me. It was just a daily ritual, let's say. You can put it in a lot of places. A lot of places. Was it every time? No. But most of the time when the pain came in, it wasn't not going to happen.

"I couldn't tell you since last October, years before that, a day I went without having a drink. I know at that time that eventually it was going to get to me."

Mediate added that due to his own issues, he had sympathy for Tiger Woods when he went through his own battle with back pain that saw him arrested for driving under the influence after taking prescription medication.

"When that happened, I went, 'Mm-hmm, yeah. I just didn't get caught,'" Mediate said. "But when it comes to that type of pain, you'll basically do whatever it takes to be able to go, "Oh, that feels better.'"

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