Alliss in war of words with 'thin-skinned' Dougherty

The old and the new worlds are always prone to collide in golf, yet rarely have they done so as angrily, or indeed as entertainingly, as Nick Dougherty and Peter Alliss here yesterday.

In an extraordinary exchange, the young professional accused the veteran BBC man of "disgusting commentary", of "showing no respect" and of being "out of touch". Alliss then hit back by accusing Dougherty and his generation of being "so bloody delicate" and poured scorn upon their excellence.

It all began after Dougherty had finished down the field in the BMW PGA Championship and was asked for his opinions on the controversial West Course greens that apparently assisted the gusts in causing Saturday's havoc when scores spiralled. But instead of attacking the putting surfaces, he went straight for the jugular of Alliss, who, with his stinging barbs, angered many watching in the Players' Lounge.

"I thought his commentary was disgusting," said the 26-year-old of Alliss, 51 years his senior. "He was talking about us being bad putters. I don't know whether it's because he has been out of the game for so long, but he ought to show us more respect. I wish we could take him out there and show him how difficult it was."

Alliss responded with incredulity rather than tact. "I know it is bloody difficult," he said. "I played at Wentworth before they had bloody watering, when you had eight wooden shots into the green with your second shot. Don't tell me it's bloody difficult. I won 21 tournaments, played in eight Ryder Cups. I am not here to do anything but say what is going on and they didn't play well.

"They are so thin-skinned nowadays. It is quite extraordinary. They all say they can take criticism and they don't mind constructive criticism. Balls. They do mind."

The old boy was just warming up and continued on what will soon become a famous golfing rant. "If it is not all perfect now, they all complain," he said. "They nearly had a walkout on Friday because the ninth green was flooded. 'Nobody told me,' they all said. As far as I am concerned, that's the way it is. Years ago, the courses weren't manicured and you had to make the most of it. I always say the golfers of a 100 years ago were 10 times more skilful. They had hickory clubs, the bunkers weren't raked, the greens weren't cut, sheep were on the course and a fellow cut the greens with a bloody scythe. And they went around St Andrews in 73 or 74.

"What did he say? 'Take him out and show him how hard it is?' Christ almighty. Hard is when Nicklaus took 84 at Royal St George's. Now, that's hard. There were no courtesy cars and all that. I had to play two rounds of bloody golf at St Andrews and then drive home through the night to give Mrs Anderson a lesson on Saturday morning. There you are. I'm sorry he is upset, because Nick is a nice lad. But he will get over it."

Alliss showed just how unrepentant he was by making repeated references to the argument through his description of yesterday's last round. For instance when the Indian Jyoti Randhawa came up 30 metres short of the 12th green, Alliss asked: "Am I allowed to say that was a mishit? Or would that be too cruel?"

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
love + sex
Arts and Entertainment
Victoria Wood, Kayvan Novak, Alexa Chung, Chris Moyles
tvReview: No soggy bottoms, but plenty of other baking disasters on The Great Comic Relief Bake Off
Sport
Ashley Young celebrates the winner for Manchester United against Newcastle
footballNewcastle 0 Man United 1: Last minute strike seals precious victory
Life and Style
Tikka Masala has been overtaken by Jalfrezi as the nation's most popular curry
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Seth Rogan is one of America’s most famous pot smokers
filmAmy Pascal resigned after her personal emails were leaked following a cyber-attack sparked by the actor's film The Interview
News
Benjamin Netanyahu and his cartoon bomb – the Israeli PM shows his ‘evidence’
people
Arts and Entertainment
80s trailblazer: comedian Tracey Ullman
tv
News
i100
Life and Style
A statue of the Flemish geographer Gerard Kremer, Geradus Mercator (1512 - 1594) which was unveiled at the Geographical Congree at Anvers. He was the first person to use the word atlas to describe a book of maps.
techThe 16th century cartographer created the atlas
Arts and Entertainment
Stephen Tompkinson is back as DCI Banks
tvReview: Episode one of the new series played it safe, but at least this drama has a winning formula
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

Setting in motion the Internet of Things

British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

Cult competition The Moth goes global

The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

Pakistani women come out fighting

Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

Education: LGBT History Month

Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
11 best gel eyeliners

Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot