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NBCgolfer

Pros Complaining about the British Open Course

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Muirfield Golf Links is a challenging course, but does it deserve the tough love these pros are giving it? I heard Lee Trevino talking about how those guys will complain about the British Open and US Open course toughness. However, Trevino mentioned they never talk down about Augusta National out of fear. Should the pros quit their belly-aching or do they have a legit leg to stand on?
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Originally Posted by NBCgolfer

Muirfield Golf Links is a challenging course, but does it deserve the tough love these pros are giving it? I heard Lee Trevino talking about how those guys will complain about the British Open and US Open course toughness. However, Trevino mentioned they never talk down about Augusta National out of fear. Should the pros quit their belly-aching or do they have a legit leg to stand on?


I personally think they should shut up and stop complaining. They're all playing the same pin placement and they're playing the same speeds and conditions for the most part.

The only time I can see a player venting is if he's teeing off in the afternoon in a Scottish storm, while the players earlier in the day played in 75 degrees and sunny weather. However, even then they should bite their tongue.

It just strikes me as petty and whiny to complain about the course. It's not the first time that the guys complaining have seen a course like this and played on one of similar conditions. Sometimes they're not quite as humble as they should be.

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I think it is their right to complain (although it may or may not help their game)

The course might be the same for everyone, but when you get very fast, baked out greens that are not perfectly smooth, the wrong pin positions can make luck play a larger role than it should.  Certain pins positions might be a fair challenge when the greens stimp 10 and are smooth, but are not fair when they stimp 12+ with some bumps.  Everyone was saying they have never seen Open greens this fast, and given some of the contours there is probably a reason for this.

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The course looked fine to me. A bit of rain would have probably made things easier and more routine, since it was playing way firm. The players that tried to hit spinning wedges got bounced really far and got no action from the ball, so that makes the course a ton tougher.

Greens were true to putt on if a bit fast, and the rough was perfectly impossible to hit out of, as it should be. There's no chance it will stay totally dry the whole weekend though, so it should enable some players to get a bit more aggressive.

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Originally Posted by Spyder

I personally think they should shut up and stop complaining. They're all playing the same pin placement and they're playing the same speeds and conditions for the most part.

The only time I can see a player venting is if he's teeing off in the afternoon in a Scottish storm, while the players earlier in the day played in 75 degrees and sunny weather. However, even then they should bite their tongue.

It just strikes me as petty and whiny to complain about the course. It's not the first time that the guys complaining have seen a course like this and played on one of similar conditions. Sometimes they're not quite as humble as they should be.

I pretty much agree with this.  I think they're too accustomed to tearing most courses to shreds.

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C'mon you PGA pros man up and dig down and get your game on if you want to play on the weekend. The answer is in the dirt.
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Originally Posted by MEfree

I think it is their right to complain (although it may or may not help their game)

The course might be the same for everyone, but when you get very fast, baked out greens that are not perfectly smooth, the wrong pin positions can make luck play a larger role than it should.  Certain pins positions might be a fair challenge when the greens stimp 10 and are smooth, but are not fair when they stimp 12+ with some bumps.  Everyone was saying they have never seen Open greens this fast, and given some of the contours there is probably a reason for this.

What gives you the idea that the greens aren't smooth?  The putts all looked to be rolling quite true.  You play the course as you find it.  I really get tired of guys making millions for playing a game then having the gall to bitch about it.

These guys are supposed to be good.  Links golf requires some adjustments.  If they can't make those adjustments then maybe they aren't all as good as they think they are.

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Originally Posted by Fourputt

What gives you the idea that the greens aren't smooth?  The putts all looked to be rolling quite true.  You play the course as you find it.  I really get tired of guys making millions for playing a game then having the gall to bitch about it.

These guys are supposed to be good.  Links golf requires some adjustments.  If they can't make those adjustments then maybe they aren't all as good as they think they are.

Watching the replay now........Tiger seems to be reading the greens easy enough.......I just heard the commentator "The harder this gets

the fewer players can win" .

Survival of the fittest .Tiger will be a big show.

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Most of the "complaining" sounds more like lobbying by the morning guys to try to get the R&A; make it easier on them for tomorrow (Friday) when they have to play in the afternoon conditions that were so tough today (Thursday).

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I loved where Trevino called them all gutless for complaining about the U.S. Open and The Open Championship but gushing over Augusta.  You gotta love Trevino!  I agree with him that its not a matter of the courses being too tough, its a matter of these guys need to toughen up.

Ive said it before and Im going to say it again, its a major, its SUPPOSED to be difficult!

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I wasn't getting the impression that they were complaining about the "toughness" of the course, but the conditions. They have had extremely warm and dry conditions for quite awhile over there. A super rare occurrence if anyone's been. Even the USGA got caught out at Shinnecock the last time it was held there. They planned their pin positions well in advance figuring on the usual conditions. Well, it hasn't been usual and they got caught out by it. They may have trying to get the greens to a certain level and overcooked them a bit. I have a feeling that they will adjust and the pin placements and green speeds will moderate. The rest of the course? I know I'd kill for roll-outs of 50-80 yards in the fairway. Don't hit into the rough or bunkers and you will play better. These guys are supposedly the best in the world, play like it and nobody complains.
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Originally Posted by turtleback

Most of the "complaining" sounds more like lobbying by the morning guys to try to get the R&A; make it easier on them for tomorrow (Friday) when they have to play in the afternoon conditions that were so tough today (Thursday).

Doesn't look like that's happening.  Tiger just said that the last 4 or 5 holes of his round today the courses is getting firmer and the greens were getting faster.  Later starters are going to face the same difficulties as they did yesterday.

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Originally Posted by Fourputt

Doesn't look like that's happening.  Tiger just said that the last 4 or 5 holes of his round today the courses is getting firmer and the greens were getting faster.  Later starters are going to face the same difficulties as they did yesterday.

That's why I'm thinking Tiger could be close to the top of the leaderboard by the end of round dos.

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Originally Posted by Fourputt

What gives you the idea that the greens aren't smooth?  The putts all looked to be rolling quite true.  You play the course as you find it.  I really get tired of guys making millions for playing a game then having the gall to bitch about it.

These guys are supposed to be good.  Links golf requires some adjustments.  If they can't make those adjustments then maybe they aren't all as good as they think they are.

True, I didn't the greens myself- My not smooth comment was based on a couple of putts that they showed at ground level seemed to be bouncing around as well as a few comments by some players and announcers about foot traffic around the hole and baked out conditions...the easier you have to stroke the ball the more influenced it becomes by any imperfection in the green.

If these guys aren't good, who is?

Originally Posted by turtleback

Most of the "complaining" sounds more like lobbying by the morning guys to try to get the R&A; make it easier on them for tomorrow (Friday) when they have to play in the afternoon conditions that were so tough today (Thursday).

That's one of the reasons why I think they are entitled to give their opinions- you see this in other sports (trying to influence refs) as well as in business and other walks of life, so why not golf?

I think the way Phil did his lobbying was really intelligent by saying that it was going to be unfair to the guys who played Thursday afternoon knowing full well that it was too late to help them but that things might be made a bit fair for his Friday afternoon round.  With that said, I think he was right about some of the greens looking like they were dying.  I haven't watched all of today, but it looks like the water they put on last night might have helped bring some spots back to life without making the course too easy for the afternoon guys.

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Originally Posted by MEfree

That's one of the reasons why I think they are entitled to give their opinions- you see this in other sports (trying to influence refs) as well as in business and other walks of life, so why not golf?

I think the way Phil did his lobbying was really intelligent by saying that it was going to be unfair to the guys who played Thursday afternoon knowing full well that it was too late to help them but that things might be made a bit fair for his Friday afternoon round.  With that said, I think he was right about some of the greens looking like they were dying.  I haven't watched all of today, but it looks like the water they put on last night might have helped bring some spots back to life without making the course too easy for the afternoon guys.

I don't think it was very intelligent of Phil at all.  Neither did he himself, apparently, since he did a quick backpeddle today.  Where he went over the line was in his comments about the R&As; ego and, essentially, arguing that they should modify the set-up so that Friday PM would not be as tough as Thursday PM.  Thankfully they didn't listen to him.  Differences in conditions because of weather are fine - luck of the draw.  Having the committee set up the course in a way that creates differences in conditions is not fine.

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They should quit whining for some of the reasons I list below.

1. Everyone is playing the same course.  I.e, the course is fair to everyone.

2. It's a major.  Deal with it or don't bother showing up.

3. We enjoy pros having to struggle just like we do.  It makes us feel better when a pro scores 86.

4. We play at crummy courses all the time and you are complaining at Muirfield.   1/2 of you are getting paid when all things are said and done.   I will play 4 rounds for free.

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