David Toms has every intention of playing in as many Presidents Cup matches as he can this week, despite being hospitalized last week in Pittsburgh when he collapsed because of a rapid heartbeat at the 84 Lumber Classic.
"I feel good," said Toms, who is taking medication to control the problem that eventually will be surgically repaired. "I was a bit sluggish early in the week. I don't know if that's because I didn't sleep for a couple of days or what, but now I'm starting to feel much better. I really don't see it being an issue at all unless for some reason I have an incident this week on or off the golf course. For now, I'm going business as usual and golf feels fine and I don't have any effects from it really.
Said teammate Kenny Perry, "We're just going to make sure none of his partners put him in any kind of stressful situations."
Toms, a native of Shreveport, La., where many evacuees from Hurricane Katrina are now being housed, also said he has received an overwhelming response from golf fans after he said three weeks ago his charitable foundation was getting involved in hurricane relief. He said he had 1,500 e-mails pledging money, most of them leaving a credit card number.
"We have a lot of people that are in bad shape and their lives have been turned upside down," he said. "You look at us, we have everything that we could ever want and we have a great life. Just to be able to do a little something, whether raising money for them or trying to win this competition to give them something to cheer about, just any bright light in their life right now is a good thing."
Singh: What Cap?
Vijay Singh was asked about the incident at the 2000 Cup here when his caddie wore a hat emblazoned with "Tiger Who?" on the back when Singh played Tiger Woods in a Sunday singles match. Woods had said Tuesday he was not pleased by what he considered a sign of disrespect.
"I was wondering how long it was going to take for you to ask that question," Singh said, smiling. "You know, I didn't even realize my caddie at that time put on that hat until I got out there. I think the issue was in 2000, and it's 2005 now and it's five years away and gone. I think I've forgotten about it as everybody else has forgotten about it but you guys [in the media], so I think the quicker you guys forget about it, everybody won't want to talk about it. So let's just forget about it, all right?"
Funk's Long Road
Fred Funk, the former University of Maryland golf coach, is playing in his second straight Presidents Cup. Two years ago, he was one of Jack Nicklaus's two captain's choices. This time, he made the team on his own, one of his goals in what might have been his last full year on the PGA Tour before he turns 50 next June and becomes eligible for the Champions Tour.
"Being so close to home is a little special for me," said Funk, who grew up near College Park. "I still pinch myself to think what I've done and where I've come from. The University of Maryland golf coach to representing the United States on the Presidents Cup team here at RTJ is pretty neat."
Both teams' players were asked not to sign autographs on the golf course, a rule the Americans mostly adhered to. The international team was a bit more liberal with its signatures as players walked from greens to tees, and as assistant captain Ian Baker-Finch said, "How can you walk past a kid and not sign?
"We've got to get as much support behind us as we can, got to get a few of those crowds cheering for us on Sunday afternoon."