2007 US Am to be Played at Pinehurst

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PINEHURST, N.C. (AP) -- The 2007 U.S. Amateur will be played on Pinehurst's famed No. 2 course.
 
It's the first time the United States Golf Association event for the country's best male amateurs will be played in the state since Hal Sutton won it in 1980 at the Country Club of North Carolina.
 
The No. 2 course at Pinehurst resort hosted the 1999 U.S. Open won by the late Payne Stewart and will hold the event again in 2005.
 
'I would imagine the amateur will be the same setup as we'll have for the '05 Open,' David Fay, executive director of the USGA, said Monday. 'That's what we tend to do when we've had the Amateur at an Open course.'
 
That could lead to some frustrating days for the 312-player field. Stewart was the only professional to break par at 1-under in the 1999 Open. However, Fay said an August tournament on the difficult greens could make the course play easier.
 
'It's going to play differently because of the time of year,' Fay said. 'You've got heavier air, the greens will be a little bit more receptive.
 
'The time of year is so important. Last year, the players feasted at the U.S. Amateur at Oakland Hills. I suspect you wouldn't see that if it was played in June.'
 
The resort's No. 4 course also will be used for two rounds of qualifying stroke play before match play begins, officials said.
 
'When you come to Pinehurst it's a matter if you like Heath Bar Crunch or Rocky Road, there are so many choices to make,' Fay said of the resort's eight courses. 'Those are two wonderful golf courses.
 
'We feel so linked to this special place. It is truly the special place of American golf.'
 
The U.S. Women's Open also will be in the area the same year at Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club in Southern Pines. But officials aren't worried about possible saturation of corporate support.
 
'They are different animals,' Fay said. 'Both will coexist very well and one will feed off the other in terms of generating interest.'