So maybe they are playing a fifth major overseas . . .
I know, I know, the depth of the field at the BMW PGA Championship isn’t up to major championship standards, but the bickering over the course design and setup ought to remind folks of the early days of The Players Championship, when Pete Dye’s TPC Sawgrass Stadium Course opened amid complaints.
A year ago, there was strong criticism of Ernie Els’ redesign of Wentworth Club’s West Course. He came in before this year's event and softened the severity of the 18th hole’s design and other course features, but Ian Poulter still wasn’t satisfied after posting a 74 in Friday’s second round.
Here’s The Telegraph’s headline on its website story: “Poulter fumes over Wentworth Nightmare.”
Poulter: “I'll speak freely, many others may not. I don't like this golf course. Period. End of story.
“I don't have a problem with tough golf courses and level par is hanging in there.
''But I'm walking off the golf course, and I'm absolutely headless. Absolutely fuming. It's not fun golf. You're watching, you tell me. Is it fun?”
Els is quoted in response: “Wentworth is now a fair and honest test of golf.
“I can understand people saying things in the heat of the moment. A guy comes off the 18th when he's just made double and he's going to be hot. What they say two minutes after finishing might not be indicative of what they think two hours later. Players who do not have a good time on the 18th will have a go.
'But you have to look at the overall picture. I believe you will not find better surfaces to putt on anywhere in the world at the moment, but unfortunately you only hear the negative comments and very little positive.
'It's two weeks before the US Open. It's the Tour's flagship event and should be played on a major championship style layout. This course is by no means unfair. It was last year, but it is not this. It is a true test of the game.”
If Poulter somehow wins, maybe he’ll throw Els into the stream in front of the 18th, much the way Jerry Pate threw Dye and PGA Tour Commissioner Deane Beman into the lake at the 18th at TPC Sawgrass.
“I wanted to drown both of them,” Pate once cracked.