Molinari on Pinehurst No.2 : It’s easily the most difficult course I’ve ever played

"Really looking forward to playing this US Open at Pinehurst."-Molinari said.

by Sead Dedovic
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Molinari on Pinehurst No.2 : It’s easily the most difficult course I’ve ever played
© Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images Sport

Ahead of the start of another US Open, many players were surprised by the golf course, aware that they were facing a tough challenge. The difficulty of Pinehurst No.2 raised concerns among many. Edoardo Molinari was one of those who was taken aback by what he saw. 

The 43-year-old Italian expressed his excitement about competing in the US Open, emphasizing that this was not a typical US Open setup for a variety of reasons. There were many aspects that the Italian was not happy with, but he maintained optimism that things could turn out positively for him. This golf course did not only concern Molinari but also most of his peers.

"Really looking forward to playing this US Open at Pinehurst. Not your typical US Open setup as fairways are generous and there is no rough…yet it’s easily the most difficult course I’ve ever played!

Greens are firm with run offs everywhere…and the actual surface where the ball can stop is very small! I think if the course keeps getting firmer until Sunday anyone finishing under par will have every chance to win! It’s going to be fun grinding out pars!"-Molinari wrote.

Wyndham Clark is also among those who have complained about the golf course, particularly focusing on the greens. The talented golfer highlighted that the greens are extremely fast and penal. In his long career, Clark has never encountered such a golf course, leaving him uncertain about what to expect from himself and his performance in this Major. The only option for everyone is to adapt to the new conditions and try to compete with others. What can be encouraging for all players is that everyone will face the same challenging conditions.

 "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.

Wyndham Clark
Wyndham Clark© Andrew Redington/Getty Images Sport
 

Viktor Hovland, a golfer from whom great things are expected in another edition of the US Open, responded to his colleague Clark's statements, not fully agreeing with him. The Norwegian believes that the rain has had a significant impact on everything, thinking that the greens are not that firm. Hovland is unsure what to expect at the US Open, but he hopes that things will go well for him and that the golf course will meet his expectations.

“Because of all the rain that happened a couple of nights ago, it’s soft,” Hovland said.

“Like the greens are not that firm. If they were, in my opinion, borderline yesterday when the greens were soft, what if it starts blowing up a little bit, and the greens just keep getting firmer and faster? It’ll be interesting to see.”

Viktor Hovland
Viktor Hovland© Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images Sport
 

Hovland mentioned that on several occasions, he missed by just a foot on the low side with slightly too much speed, resulting in the ball rolling off the green. He pointed out that some of the pin placements seemed a bit too close to the drop-offs, making the course more difficult.


Tiger Woods reacts

Another star of the golf scene was also surprised by this golf course. As a man who has been through a lot in his career and achieved great successes, Woods realized that things are not ideal for his colleagues and himself. However, his experience could be crucial in this tournament, even though expectations for Woods are not high. Injuries that trouble him are the reason why it is difficult to expect the best from Woods.

Tiger Woods mentioned that during recent practice rounds, he and his fellow golfers have frequently putted off the greens. He suggested that the severity of the conditions would depend on how strict the USGA wanted to be and how close they would push the limits. Woods anticipated that, similar to what happened in 2005, players might end up hitting the ball back and forth like in a game of ping-pong due to the challenging setup.

Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods© Patrick Smith/Getty Images Sport
 

Woods believes he will have the strength to do what is necessary to achieve a positive outcome. He emphasized once again how much this course will test the mental component of the players. It will be essential to handle it in the right way.

“Yeah, I do feel like I have the strength to be able to do it,’’ he said. “It’s just a matter of doing it. This golf course is going to test every single aspect of your game, especially mentally.’’

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