That was a golf major like no other. Chambers Bay has copped a lot of flak over the last four days in producing a course that was like no other.
The former quarry posed a unique set of challenges. Tight fairways, craters for bunkers, and undulating greens that were, well, pretty dry.
These unusual conditions inevitably provoked complaints, with noted whiner Ian Poulter leading the charge. He slapped a photo of a green on his Instagram account, twice described the course as disgraceful, and claimed that the greens should have been relayed (sic).
Swede Henrik Stenson talked about “borderline laughable” greens before comparing them to broccoli and “the surface of the moon”; which is an interesting astronomical theory.
But what we got at Chambers Bay was a tournament that people, particularly causal followers of the sport, were captivated by. This was Extreme Golf where you never knew what was going to happen, and where putts narrowly missing the hole could roll on for another 50 metres or more. Added to that was the attraction of some casual schadenfreude. If Poulter is having a moan then something must be right. The last time he was this outraged was when his Au Pair had to travel Economy Class.
Whether these conditions contributed to Jason Day’s vertigo attack is unlikely, but that was a good example of the drama that ensued. Dustin Johnson’s melt-down on the 72nd green was another example.
This was the complete antithesis of what takes place at Augusta, with its over-crafted prissy conformity. Perhaps people relished the variety.
In the end it was won by the same player who won at Augusta, and who is now widely considered the best golfer in the world. So it was hardly a lottery.