R&A Bites Back

David Hill, the R&A's director of championships, on Ron Whitten's Golf Digest critique of Hoylake:

"It would have been nice if he had played the course. We would then have had more respect for the comments he made," said Hill.

"I think the week of the championship will tell if his comments were inaccurate or accurate.

"We would not have come back if we didn't think it was of the highest standard. It's in first-class condition and the top-class players coming here will enjoy it.

"Obviously, we're hoping for the variation in the weather that is the main protection of all links courses and what makes them such great challenges."


And Hill's defence of Hoylake was seconded by BBC golf commentator and former leading player Ken Brown.

"Nearly all traditional links courses are old-fashioned. That's not derogatory in my mind, it's traditional - how golf should be played," said Brown.

"It's an unsung, wonderful links course."

You may recall it was Brown who confronted Tom Fazio at Augusta this year about the changes made there.