Just as Pete Dye envisioned, the winds howled off the Atlantic and blew the players' scores into the stratosphere on Friday at the PGA Championship.
Rains on Wednesday night made the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island soft and long, plus reasonably calm winds during the day on Thursday helped scoring be less painful.
I am sure Mr. Dye was less than pleased.
44 of the 152 golfers that teed it up in the first round broke par on one of the most difficult courses in the world.
“These guys are good.”
On Friday, in the heavy winds, it was a completely different story: only four players broke par.
49-year-old Vijay Singh posted the low round for the day with a sizzling three-under 69.
Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Ian Poulter all shot one-under 71s.
Scoring was nearly impossible on Friday. Any shot not hit flush was at the mercy of the winds. Even good shots could end up in some very unsavory places.
The PGA should have issued chin straps for the players’ ball caps.
Short-game skills and patience became a necessity for any golfer hoping to survive the carnage on Friday.
On Thursday, the par-4 No. 9 was ranked as the hardest hole on the course with 98 pars, 46 bogeys, seven dreaded others and a 4.340 stroke average.
On Friday, it dropped to the sixth-hardest hole, but produced only 80 pars, 63 bogeys, seven others and a stroke average of 4.474.
The par-4 No. 10 became the most difficult on Friday with a 4.641 stroke average and 17 scores of double bogey or higher.
If you like to watch professional golfers struggle with the course and the elements, it was your kind of day.
Tiger’s 71 has put him tied with Vijay Singh and first-round leader Carl Pettersson, who shot a second-round two-over 74.
Tiger and Vijay will be paired together today and will go off at 3:00 p.m. EST.
Ian Poulter is one shot back of the leaders and will play with Pettersson in the next-to-last group.
Rory McIlroy survived yesterday with a 75 and is still in contention. He is just two shots behind the leaders and is in the second-to-last group off at 2:40 PM.
Rory is trying to break out of his self-induced “Love Funk” and find his lost golf game.
Vijay Singh is trying to turn back the hands of time for one more “Major Fling” before he rides off into the Champions Tour.
Tiger Woods is chasing Jack Nicklaus and trying to shake off his personal demons, injuries and swing changes that have kept him out of the major winner's circle since 2008.
Could we see a Rory vs. Tiger final pairing on Sunday?