DORAL, Fla. – Phil Mickelson is a course design connoisseur and a professed fan of Gil Hanse’s work, so it stood to reason that he would enjoy the recently renovated Trump National Doral.
While he wasn’t as pointed with his comments as others after a second round that yielded a scoring average of four strokes over par in gusting 30 mph winds, Mickelson was critical of a setup that had 113 balls finding water hazards on Friday.
“There was repeatedly good shot after good shot that was ending up in the water, because there was no good place to go,” said Mickelson, who shot a 3-over 75. “You start to see the nuances when you get these conditions. It’s tough when you’re just making dirt to do that and to know that. I expected a little bit more from Gil, because I think he’s really good.”
Many players contended that greens which were previously flat in order to hold approach shots are now so contoured that they’d find the rough, the bunkers and, yes, the water.
“There were probably some things that could have been done a little bit better,” he added. “There were some holes that, under these conditions, there wasn’t a viable way to play the hole. … The only thing I would say is that if you only have 15 mile per hour winds, no problem. But this isn’t an anomaly. We get this every year, so you’ve got to kind of be ready for it.”