John Huggan with this
On Sunday Scotland Scotland On Sunday observation about Tiger and the USGA setup at Oakmont:
This time he hit more fairways and more greens than the eventual champion - supposedly the secret to winning US Opens - and lost again.And on Oakmont...
Such statistics are just another indication that the USGA are failing in their supposed and much-repeated mission to identify the "best" player. Their mantra used to be "fairways and greens" in the style of Ben Hogan, but now fifth-placed Bubba Watson-like "rough and scramble" would seem to be more appropriate.
Oakmont prides itself on being the toughest course in America, with a good part of that difficulty stemming from what must be the most fiendish and interesting set of greens anywhere. Sadly, that aspect of the Oakmont test was largely lost because of the mindless one-dimensionality of the USGA's set-up.
Rather than let the players decide for themselves the angles at which they would most like to approach the putting surfaces, and so hopefully take strategic advantage of their slopes, America's ruling body closed their minds to what would have produced a fascinating test of golf, and buried the aforementioned angles beneath the same old sea of rough. So we are left to imagine just what sort of score (given the same level of ball-striking) that Woods could have managed in that already-superb third round. Or by how much he could have separated himself from the field. What a waste.