I guess that's a bit of a misleading headline?
But after four days of watching the insipid sponge that is Celtic Manor with its flat greens, 70s bunkers and strategy-light design, I'm thinking all of this criticism of the FedExCup for sticking us with an October date is a distraction for writers to conveniently look past the European Tour's prostituting of the "purest" event in golf. Yes, the Celtic swooning was relatively minor, though one scribe noted the courses "fabled finale," referring to the spellbinding finishing stretch.
Still, as poor as most could see the course was, the critics came out against the FedExCup forcing a month later date, but as reader Mark said it best in another thread:
Pretty hard to take Euro journalist complaints about FedEx cup and that money grab seriously when their own tour auctions off the Ryder Cup venue to the highest bidder every 4 years. The fact that the RC is going to Scotland in 4 years and it is not going to St Andrews disqualifies them from ever complaining about someone else dies something for money.
Not only is 2014 not going to St. Andrews, it's not even going to the best course at Gleneagles, a posh but mediocre golf complex when compared to the options in Scotland.
Okay, I know the Celtic Manor surrounds looked pretty...when you could see them. But architecturally it made Valhalla look refined and timeless, but worse than that, accomplished the unthinkable: Celtic Manor actually has me longing for Medinah in 2012 just to see a few interesting decisions!
Celtic has little in the way of charming greens and surrounds, and as we saw, modern subsurface drainage is no substitute for good, old-fashioned surface drainage. Celtic offered little in the way of risk-reward question posing. And before you cite the short par-4 15th, can you recall a player ever agonizing over the decision to go for the green versus laying up? Most egregious of all were those bland par-3s, which created no drama. The Mahan-McDowell match would have been dramatic coming to a polo field of a golf hole, so no crediting No. 17 for fostering a dramatic finish, please.
We keep hearing how this course was designed for the Ryder Cup, however, it featured almost no match play-endearing qualities. Yet it's the big, bad FedExCup that tainted this into a sloppy mess of a Ryder Cup, even as they were enjoying links golf just fifty miles away at the same time Celtic Manor was unplayable. And all because the European Tour has made the event their financial centerpiece and for sale to the highest bidder.
So, after that misleading setup...real evil, FedExCup or European Tour venue selection?