Bunker Mentality

Female golf stars up in arms over golf magazine’s front cover

Bunker Mentality

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Paulina Gretzky's Golf Digest Cover

Paulina Gretzky, the daughter of hockey legend Wayne Gretzky, might seem an odd choice of cover model for a golf magazine.

The fact that she is the fiancée of world top 10 golfer Dustin Johnson and once appeared in a golf advert might give her a bit credibility, Bunker Mentality supposes.

But let's face it, that isn't what Golf Digest magazine's editors were thinking of when they dressed her in a sports bra and skin-tight tracksuit bottoms and asked her to pose provocatively for their photographer.

And so perhaps it's unsurprising that some of the best women golfers in the world have been queueing up to grumble about the saucy cover shoot for the American magazine.

World number three Stacy Lewis told the New York Times that it is "frustrating", and explained that "we'd like to see a little respect for the women's game."

Serial Major winner Inbee Park was philosophical about the cover, saying that it's, "just been the way it is for over 20, 30 years."

Veteran star Angela Stanford had a different take on the matter: she didn't have a problem with using a scantily-clad woman on the cover of the magazine, but rued the fact that it wasn't a pro golfer.

"You know the old saying, sex sells. And nobody can argue with that. It's just the way it is," she said in an interview with USA Today.

"But the LPGA has some attractive women and very fit women, so why not use them? I'm just baffled by it."

US golf legend Juli Inkster was cross chiefly because the magazine has splashed the likes of Kate Upton on the cover in recent months, but hasn't had a woman golfer on the cover in six years (Mexico's Lorena Ochoa was the one to earn that accolade).

"It’s frustrating because it’s Golf Digest; it’s not Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue. I think they should maybe recognize some of the great women golfers that we have," she told the New York Times.

"It’s like, What do you have to do to get a little respect? I’m guaranteeing you right now, it was not a woman editor who chose that cover."

The magazine's editor-in-chief Jerry Tarde defended the decision to put the 25-year-old model on the front of his magazine, saying, "Paulina ranks at the high end of the golf celebrity scene today, and she has a compelling story to tell," while adding that the magazine has often featured celebrities as well as touring professionals.

And there, at the bottom of his explanation, was a link to a slideshow with 17 more pictures from the cover shoot.

Because why settle for a few extra magazine sales when you can also deliver some failsafe internet click-bait as well?

Paulina Gretzky's Golf World slideshow

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