Wyndham Clark before the US Open: The greens are extremely fast and penal

"You hit it on the green, the hole is not done. I was just amazed how fast the greens are."

by Sead Dedovic
Wyndham Clark before the US Open: The greens are extremely fast and penal
© Gregory Shamus/Getty Images Sport

Wyndham Clark is motivated to defend his US Open title this year and attempt to win another Major. Of course, this is an extremely difficult task, and few have succeeded in it. The last person to achieve this was Brooks Koepka, who managed to win in 2017 and 2018, impressing everyone. Before him, only Ben Hogan managed to achieve such success, winning in 1950 and 1951. A few other golfers managed to do the same, but looking at the recent past, Koepka is the only one who can boast of such a feat.

Clark is already somewhat concerned about the conditions on the golf course before the start of the tournament, considering that the greens are extremely fast and penal. The 30-year-old golfer will have a tough task ahead of him. This will be a great opportunity to test his skills, and the US Open is the ideal occasion for that. Clark has emphasized that he is surprised by how fast the greens are, considering them to be borderline.

"The greens are extremely fast and penal. You hit it on the green, the hole is not done. I was just amazed how fast the greens are. Yeah, I mean, they are extremely fast. If they get any firmer and faster, the greens, I mean, they'd be borderline. They already are borderline," Clark said, as quoted by Golf Monthly.

Clark reflected on his practicing and highlighted what will be the biggest thing when it comes to this tournament. However, he still tends to be optimistic, believing that he can make a breakthrough and achieve a great result.

"But yeah, as far as practicing, I mean, the biggest thing is where you leave yourself on the greens," he continued.

Wyndham Clark
Wyndham Clark© Andrew Redington/Getty Images Sport

Clark discusses the strategic approach he and his caddie took during their recent round. They carefully analyzed the pin positions and aimed for certain spots on the greens to set up easier opportunities for getting up and down. This doesn't mean intentionally missing greens, but rather favoring positions that make recovery shots more manageable.

He emphasizes the importance of reading the greens correctly, especially considering the amount of break they have. Even on shorter putts, they have to adjust their aim significantly to accommodate for the slope and grain of the greens. This requires extensive practice and focus, which he plans to prioritize in the upcoming days to prepare for future rounds.

Clark also commented on the greens at Pinehurst No.2, which will have grain. He emphasized that he doesn't know how much that will affect the break of the putts.

"Yeah, I mean, the grain, I don't know if it affects maybe the break of the putts as much on these greens because they are cut so tight that the green is not grabbing it," he said.

Clark expressed his recent struggles with his golf game, stressing that it hasn't been up to his usual standards. He sees this tournament as an opportunity to turn things around and build momentum for the rest of the season. While he understands that some may interpret his goals for the week as modest, he's primarily focused on regaining confidence and finding his rhythm on the course.

His main aspirations for the tournament include hitting quality shots, executing successful recovery shots when needed, sinking crucial putts, and maintaining consistency throughout all four rounds. Ultimately, his aim is to string together solid performances that will move him forward and boost his confidence moving forward.

Wyndham Clark and expectations

Clark is certainly a player with enormous potential, someone who can achieve great things if he's in the form we expect him to be. Although things haven't been ideal for him lately, optimism is all he has left. This tournament will feature big names from the world of golf, as usual, all competing for the title. Clark is a golfer who, on a great day, seems unstoppable. We'll see if that's the case this time as well.

The bookmakers aren't particularly favorable towards Clark, not considering him a favorite at all. Judging by the bookies' predictions, the main favorite for victory will be Scottie Scheffler (+350). Scheffler is a man who has dominated golf courses for months.

Following him, as you could expect is, Rory McIlroy (+1000). After these two big names, there's the man who recently won a Major, Xander Schauffele (+1200). Then comes Viktor Hovland (+1600). Young Ludvig Aberg is someone who could make a big breakthrough in this major (+1800). There are also Jon Rahm (+1600) and Brooks Koepka (+2000). In any case, it will be interesting, and we hope for an exciting tournament.

We hope for surprising and great performances by individuals, especially young golfers. Opinions about the favorite are divided, and that is precisely the charm of this sport.

Wyndham Clark Us Open