BEFORE golf, my game was tennis.

When I was still playing it, my passion for tennis was rivaled only by my love for poetry.

I played it almost every morning.

Then I shifted to golf. For 1,001 quaint reasons, I found golf’s charm, if not challenge, more appealing.

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It’s the craziest game of all because you play it come rain or shine. Only thunder and lightning can take you out of the golf course.

You know golf is difficult. Yet, you keep coming back, craving for more.

In golf, you just can’t repeat a good shot with the next shot at hand and yet, you don’t give up. Like Obama, you don’t quit.

Of all sports, God’s presence in golf is absolute: Only He can give you a hole-in-one.

And even as God answers prayers, He rarely answers requests. He gives you an ace at a most unexpected moment – as in a miracle happening.

Jack Nicklaus asked: “What is the most important shot in golf?”

His answer: “The next shot.”

Like golf, the next shot in tennis is also a key shot as it can either spell defeat or victory.

It can be a volley or a passing shot, a down-the-line forehand or a crosscourt backhand.

You are never too sure if your next shot is a lob or a drop shot maybe.

Your next shot will all depend on what your foe’s shot would be.

Not in golf.

Only you decide which kind of a shot you need to make.

Unlike tennis, you have no opponent in golf. Only your own self is your enemy in golf.

Nobody, nobody but you will chart the outcome of your game.

In golf, you are like writing a book. You either author a stinker or a bestseller.

In tennis, you are like going into a gunfight at the OK Corral. The one standing is champ.

That’s one compelling reason why I haven’t totally left tennis.

Thus, in today’s Australian Open finals, will Serena Williams deflect Justin Henin’s storybook comeback bid?

I don’t believe Mike Limpag when he said his Australian Open had ended with Maria Sharapova’s first-round loss to Maria Kirilenko, stunning as it may seem as Kirilenko is ranked a mere 34th. For, surely, it’d be a shame if Mike would miss watching today’s impending classic.

Hey, c’mon, Mike, you can’t be serious?

Life moves on, you know.