Bale admits issue with Pebble Beach and compares course with Bernabeu

Gareth Bale announces retirement from professional football

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Gareth Bale admitted to being nervous following his golf debut at the Pebble Beach Pro-am event. Last month, the former Real Madrid star sent shockwaves through the football world after announcing his retirement. The Welshman has always had a passion for golf and has wasted no time completely throwing himself into it.

Despite being accustomed to playing in front of huge crowds throughout his career, he felt the pressure as he made his first appearance on the PGA Tour event at the Spyglass Hill course. “I think every amateur will tell you that. Even if we are used to playing in front of 80,000 or more on live TV it’s a completely different sport,” he said after his round.

“It’s good experience but luckily I hit one of my best shots down the first fairway.” Bale made his first appearance in the sport as one of the amateurs in the historic Pro-Am event alongside his playing partner Joseph Bramlett.

JUST IN: Gareth Bale playing partner ‘made him putt’ after hitting insane chip shot from cart path

The Welshman,  who plays off a handicap of two – enjoyed a successful start at Pebble Beach, carding an impressive seven-under-par 65 in his opening round. The highlight of Bale’s performance came just two holes in, as he played a miraculous chip shot from the cart path, to leave his ball just a few feet from the hole.

Speaking about the chip shot post-round, the ex-Spurs winger said: “I am more worried how I was there in the first place but I guess a lot of amateurs find themselves out of position. It was a great shot, I was just trying to play it into the bank and hope for the best like most amateurs do. It was nice to see it roll up nice and close.

“He [playing partner Joseph Bramlett] was pretty much in for par so I was like ‘I’ll pick it up’ but he made me putt it as he was like ‘It will be one of the greatest up and downs’. I finished it off nicely and it was a great shot, I can’t really say much more.”

Ahead of Bale’s golf bow, his talents on paper put him among the top 10 amateur performers in the field of 156 celebrities. That’s because only nine of the 155 other amateurs can boast lower than his two handicap coming into the contest.

The field also includes household names such as Hollywood actor Bill Murray, Super Bowl-winner Aaron Rodgers and two-time NBA champion Pau Gasol. Bale’s exploits on the golf course have even impressed some of the pros, such as former world number one Jon Rahm, who recently went nine holes with Wales’ most capped player at Torrey Pines.

“I told Gareth you just can’t be so good at professional football and golf at the same time, it just doesn’t seem fair,” said the Spaniard ahead of Bale’s Pro-Am appearance. “You can’t be dedicated to one thing and still have this much talent for golf, it’s not fair in the slightest. But he’s looking to retire soon and he loves this sport and he loves golf. He really wants to play a little bit more and hopefully in the future I’ll see him more times in the Pro-Am.”

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