US Open: Player calls Chambers Bay a ‘tragedy’

It may have been one of the most stirring finishes ever witnessed in 115 runnings of the US Open.

And there may have been three South Africans in the “mix” on the final day.

Yet the nine-time major champion and 1965 US Open winner described the links-style Chambers Bay course in Washington in the north-west of the US as a “tragedy”.

Despite Jordan Spieth’s awesome finish to edge out Dustin Johnson and Louis Oosthuizen, Player told The Golf Channel it was the most unpleasant golf tournament he had ever seen.

Strong words from one of the great students of the game.

Yet Player said he had never seen so many players happy to miss the cut and head for home before the final two rounds.

“We’re playing the US Open, this great championship,” Player commented.

“But this has been the most unpleasant golf tournament I’ve seen in my life.”

“I mean the man who designed this golf course had to have one leg shorter than the other.”

Chambers Bay did have some amazing elevations but was designed by world-renowned architect Robert Trent Jones Jr. and opened for play in 2007.

A public golf course, Chambers Bay has been rated the No 1 municipal golf course in the United States and with a par of 70 took golf viewers alongside Puget Sound with a railway line between the course and the water.

“It’s hard to believe that you see a man miss the green by one yard and the ball ends up 50 yards down in the rough,” added Player.

“And can you imagine this is a public golf course?”

“This is where we are trying to encourage people to come out and play and get more people to play the game.”

“They’re having a putt from 20-30 foot and they’re allowing 20 foot (of break) right and 20 foot (of break) left.”

“It’s actually a tragedy.”

Player said he felt they [the USGA] simply shouldn’t have taken an event like the US Open to a course like Chambers Bay: “It’s [just] devastating,” he said.