I don’t pass up an opportunity to golf with my dad, especially at his fantastic club Hidden Valley CC. So yesterday when the email rolled in with an invite I hit record on the DVR to record round one of the PGA Championship and flew out the door. When I left Tiger Woods had played 5-6 holes and was -3. It was looking like he was in control of his game. I was amazed when I got back to find out that he’d apparently completely lost that control and finished with his worst ever opening score in a major championship, 77. Some how TW had lost 10 shots to par after I stopped watching. Wow.
The quote below is very telling. It seems Tiger has no control over his shots at this point. I’m sure this isn’t good news to his swing coach Sean Foley.
“My shots don’t shape like they used to. I don’t shape the ball as much. I went ahead and, as I said, just played by feel and I just hit it, aimed too far right and it didn’t move. And a lot of fades out there did the same thing. I aimed left for a fade and it doesn’t move, it moves about a yard or two and I’m used to having it cut a lot more than that. And my draw used to move a lot than that as well.” ~Tiger Woods following first round of 2011 PGA Championship
Steve Stricker posted a major championship record tying 63 yesterday. I’d sure love to see him win a major. Stricker is certainly one of those who could qualify as “current best player who hasn’t won a major.” I just wonder if he can keep it together all weekend. Typically super low rounds aren’t followed up by another.
Rory McIlroy should have dropped away from that tree root yesterday. Round two is underway as I write this and his wrist is wrapped as he has some tendon damage. Judging from his swings, he’s a bit worried about it but he’s still hitting some great shots.
I’m very surprised by the performance of Jerry Kelly who shot a 65 yesterday (2nd) and Shaun Micheel shooting 66. What is it with Micheel and the PGA? Just plays well in this event?
Phil Mickelson was quite outspoken about his low opinion of the design work on the course by Rees Jones, namely the very long par-3 holes. He was saying that these holes were fine for tour play, but too hard for the average golfer. Strangely though, some of what he said was removed from the transcripts from the event. Hmmm. Phil is still in it, shooting a +1 71.
There are many other interesting story lines from day one, but I can’t possibly cover them all. Comment in your thoughts.
I strongly agree with Phil Mickelson. Par 3 holes should be designed for accuracy but instead they seem to be getting longer. My local course has 2 par 3 holes over 200 yards 1 uphill and one downhill now when the wind is blowing these become even harder. They should definetly take “average golfers” into consideration more.