Being in the golf business, there are some names that, when they appear on a leaderboard, are wont to give you the typing yips. They’re just hard to spell, and you tremble with fear that you’re going to botch it and incur the wrath of the player in question, your editor or a commenter.
So, we decided to rank the 10 hardest names to spell in golf right now and explain why they’re so challenging. But at least none of these names are that of Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, who has as many nicknames (Greek Freak, The Alphabet and more!) as letters in his last name.
10. Rory McIlroy: The problem here is that the I and lower-case L are easy to goofball. I mean, if I type ll on the right computer with the right font, it looks like Il. Hell, I could slip a 1 in there and have a chance of getting away with it.
9. Gwladys Nocera: The Frenchwoman’s first name just throws me for a loop every time. The only way I get it right is imagining the shock-rock band Gwar formed a spinoff band of all women called Gwladys.
8. Kiradech Aphibarnrat: Believe it or not, the Thailand native’s name is not nearly as tough to spell as it looks at first glance. If you learned to read with the help of phonics, it’s not too hard to sound out. But then it just seems too obvious once you type it. And it’s easier compared to his past name: Anujit Hirunratanakorn.
7. Julien Quesne: The Frenchman’s last name is pronounced like legendary British actor Michael Caine’s surname, so the tendency is to start with a C.
6. Charl Schwartzel: Two problems with the ’11 Masters champ’s name: (1) Charl flows into a last name starting with S so you’re inclined to spell out Charles, like Charl E. Schwartzel and (2) It’s very difficult, left-hand-heavy last name to type. Whoever designed the keyboard had the right idea with the Z where it is, but it’s no fun to use it.
5. Peter Uihlein: If I was dictating a note to you and told you to send it to Peter Uihlein, you’d spell it Peter Youline, maybe Ulein. Good luck.
4. Carl Pettersson: The self-described Swedish redneck is in the difficult position of having similar last names to Suzann Pettersen and John Peterson. It’s like trying to spell Mississippi: You need rules. Swedish: Two Ts and two Ss. Norwegian: Two Ts, one S. America: One of each.
3. Jbe’ Kruger: Jbe’s name isn’t really Jbe. It’s a nickname, like J.B., as in J.B. Holmes, except it’s for James Berry and not to remind you of a certain porn star. But if you haven’t previously had that explained to you — the James Berry thing — then you’re up the creek.
2. Louis Oosthuizen: No lie, I misspelled his name in setting up this bit. Conceivably, it’s easy to spell if you sound out how you think his name should sound (which is wrong). Mavis Beacon has nightmares about typing this name.
1. Tyrone van Aswegen: A TV producer once asked me facetiously if I was on the Aswegen. I thought they meant Asswagon, and told that person my then-girlfriend-now-wife wouldn’t like if I was. That person meant Tyrone van Aswegen. Now every time I type his name, I want to type Asswagon.