Imagine if the PGA Tour players, frustrated with the depth of the pot bunkers at Royal Birkdale, complained.
Imagine the next day you see the R&A bring in truckloads of dirt to fill them in.
The moment I saw the USGA start cutting the rough at the U.S. Open – caving into the players complaints of the difficulty of the golf course – I cringed. Then I witnessed one of the most boring tournaments I have ever watched on Television.
I love major Championships. I love the challenge for the players. I love the drama. There wasn’t much drama this weekend. Why? A number of factors.
- 60 yard wide fairways.
- Fairways like runways that allow everyone to hit it over 300 yards.
- Players hitting irons into 663 yard par 5’s.
- Finishing hole – a par 5.
The most exciting hole on the course was the 9th, a short 165 yard par 3. They should have make that the finishing hole. There was more drama on that hole than any other hole on the course.
I can’t figure out the USGA. They waged war against the long putter – but they won’t grow the rough and narrow fairways? Go figure.
It’s no wonder the game is declining. They are creating a elitist sport where only the longest can survive. Its becoming a long drive contest.
So I’ll say it again. I love the Open Championship where the game began – because the pot bunkers and playable lies keep the players in check. Every shot becomes risk / reward.
Risk and Rewards are what create drama. Just imagine a course where Driver of the tee gives you a huge advantage where you can slide a wedge into a flag. Yes, you can hit driver on every hole – if you dare. Go ahead, take the risk but if you miss the fairway it guarantees double bogey.
Or, maybe you chose a more conservative strategy and play an iron from the tee leaving a more difficult approach to an unforgiving green. Your strategy is to par your way around the course – saving the risk for the weekend.
Welcome to the Open Championship. That’s why I love it.
Yes, I was disappointed it he USGA and the U.S. Open. That doesn’t take away the amazing play of Brooks Kopeka. He played great. What a great athlete – he was long overdue.
Oh by the way, don’t worry, the R&A aren’t going to fill in the pot bunkers.