Francesco Molinari reveals 'Tiger' tattoo

Francesco Molinari Open 2019

As he prepares to try to become the first player since Padraig Harrington in 2008 to successfully defend the Claret Jug, Open champion Francesco Molinari has revealed he has a rather unusual tattoo.

The Chinese symbol for 'Tiger' - and no, it has nothing to do with his old foe Mr. Woods.

Speaking to reporters ahead of this week's championship at Royal Portrush, Molinari explained that he got the inking done on a rebellious whim just after his 18th birthday.

“It was a silly thing," he said. "I guess. I thought ‘I’m 18, I can do whatever I want, I’ll get a tattoo.’ And then I’ll regret it for the rest of my life.

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“The thing that I regret is that I went in and I wanted to have a tattoo, but I didn’t have a clue about what tattoo I should have. The guy was trying to tell me to come back another time, think about what you want. But I said, ‘No, no we need do it now, just show me a catalogue of images.

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"I wish it was something more meaningful than a random Chinese symbol. I can’t even be 100% sure that it is a Chinese symbol for a tiger. It might be fried dumplings or something!”

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He also quashed any notion that the tat was inspired by 15-time major champion Tiger Woods.

"I grew up admiring him and the way he played, like anyone in my generation but it's not really because of him that I got it," he added. "I think taking it away would be more painful than having it done, so I'm not going to do that."

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