AKRON, Ohio – Arriving Wednesday from a visit to Oak Hill Country Club, Tiger Woods shared some thoughts on the venue that next week will play host to the PGA Championship. When offered an open-ended question about the Rochester, N.Y., course, the 14-time major champion was quick to focus on the speed and condition of the putting surfaces.
“The greens are spotty … they were running just under 9 on the Stimp,” Woods explained before beginning his practice round for the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club. “They don’t have much thatch to them, so it’ll be interesting to see what they do for the tournament and how much they’re able to speed them up with kind of a lack of grass.”
Green speeds have been a cause for concern for Woods throughout this season, specifically in his most recent start at the British Open, a result that Wednesday he once again blamed on his inability to get used to Muirfield’s perpetually slowing greens.
“I had a chance to win and didn’t quite get it done on Sunday,” he said. “Looking back on it … the only difference is I just didn’t get the feel of those greens the last few days and I didn’t make the adjustments.”
Woods noted that several of the green complexes at Oak Hill have changed since the course hosted the 2003 PGA Championship, when the current world No. 1 finished in a tie for 39th. Though the greens were slower than he expected during his recent visit, Woods remains confident that the surfaces will peak in time for the season’s fourth major next week.
“I’m sure by Monday they’ll get them up to speed. They’re looking to get them at around 12 and 13 (on the Stimpmeter),” he added. “You don’t want to do it for two weeks with how they are right now, just save them for the week of the tournament. Most of the guys are here anyways, here playing, so I think that’s a wise decision.”