Sang Moon Bae is co-leader at The Barclays but whatever happens he will leave to fulfill his two years of Korean military service next month. The fact that he tried and failed to dodge the draft in court will not be lost on the Korean Military; they do not take kindly to celebrity conscripts attempting to avoid their duty.  Many Korean celebs have tried to dodge the draft but only a handful have succeeded. Branded a deserter, deportation and bans from ever entering the country again are just some of the minor consequences.

In 2011 rapper MC Mong pulled out his own teeth to avoid the draft on a technicality. A massive Korean TV personality before, he was never seen on screen since. And wont be.

The best Tim Finchem and the PGA Tour can do for Bae is say "Best of luck kid, we'll organize that your exemption on your PGA Tour rolls over to when you come back."

Nothing it seems can delay Bae's departure.  Even if Captain Nick Price picks him for the President's Cup, he wont be able to make it.

Compare Bae to footballer Son Heung-min who just completed a £21.9m move from Bayer Leverkusen to Tottenham. Son is 23 and in the exact same position as Bae but at that price and with a shrewd businessman like Daniel Levi involved, he wont be leaving for his military service anytime soon. Son is a massive public figure in Korea and potentially opens up a huge business revenue stream with the Koren market for Tottenham.

Already last year the Korea Football Association offered to grant Son exemption from his military service requirement if  Bayer Leverkusen would release him to play in the 2014 Asian Games and they won gold. Current conscription laws stipulate that athletes who win medals in the Olympic Games or gold medals in the Asian Games are granted exemptions.  In the end Leverkusen refused to release him, but it just shows the extent of the wranglings involved.

It will be interesting to see as Sang Moon Bae aims his rifle into the no-mans-land that divides South and North Korea whether Son Heung-min will ever join him in the ranks. With football clubs now almost as powerful as national governments, I'm saying not while he's young enough to kick a ball!

Join the GolfCentralDaily community on Facebook Here and on Twitter Here.
Share To:


Uncensored, independent, inside the ropes Tour golf news and spoofs from the world's best golf blog!

Post A Comment:

0 comments so far,add yours