Leading article: Out of the woods?

Click to follow

Tiger Woods' televised statement yesterday at the Sawgrass Clubhouse in Ponte Vedra, Florida, was more stage-managed than a production by the Cirque du Soleil.

Every detail seemed calculated to drive home the twin message of heartfelt contrition and forgiveness, from the golfer's sober choice of dress, to the tender hug for mum at the end. Woods delivered his public apology for his philandering ways with such solemnity that the casual viewer might have mistaken it for a briefing by a United Nations official on some grave new Security Council resolution.

But this is the way of things now. Theatricality and the skills of the public relations professionals are now a fixture of public life. And the barriers between show business, sport and politics are collapsing. People might disagree over the desirability of such a trend. But who could honestly deny that it doesn't make for compelling viewing?