OPINION: Pebble Beach will mak...

Golf

OPINION: Pebble Beach will make this a great US Open


Share this article


There is a way of being as good as Tiger Woods and to win at the iconic golf course Pebble Beach by 15 shots. It is to play his computer game. 

Many a former teenager mastered the simulated Pebble Beach, a mix of parkland and breathtaking sea links on the beautiful coast of California. It will be the host venue for the 2019 US Open from Thursday.

Jack Nicklaus and Tom Watson have won the US Open at Pebble Beach. The course tests precision, ball striking and touch. One needs to be in complete control of their game to win at this 'St Andrews of the USA'.

Having fun on the PlayStation makes one wonder how Woods achieved what he did in the 2000 US Open at Pebble Beach, finishing on 12 under par on what was the most perfect week of his golfing life.

It was the first leg of what became the 'Tiger Slam', as Woods would hold all four majors by the following year's Masters.

Jun 10, 2019; Pebble Beach, CA, USA; U.S. Open flag at the 17th hole during a practice round of the 2019 U.S. Open golf tournament at Pebble Beach Golf Links. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports/Sipa USA

19 years later Woods returns to Pebble Beach as the Masters champion.

His story is good enough on its own to dominate the headlines this week, but it's one tale of many as we prepare for the third major of the year.

What of the course and the set up? The USGA, the governing body, have been criticised for letting the US Open become too tricked up, too unfair in recent years. The editions at Chambers Bay and Shinnecock Hills drew anger from the players.

Right now, the rough is high at Pebble Beach, but the greens are fair. Hopefully the organisers will let mother nature do the rest.

World number one Brooks Koepka, the recent US PGA winner at Bethpage Black, is attempting to become the first golfer since Willie Anderson in 1905 to win a hat-trick of US Open crowns.

Phil Mickelson won the AT & T Pro-Am at Pebble Beach earlier this year. He has finished second at the US Open on six occasions and just needs this major to complete the career Grand Slam. He turns 49 on Sunday. What a final day that could be.

Jordan Spieth is suddenly resurgent. Dustin Johnson loves the track and blew a three shot lead in the final round of the last Pebble Beach US Open in 2010.

What of the Irish trio?  Well, they all have chances.

Graeme McDowell won that tournament with an even par score in 2010. His top ten finish in Canada last week has qualified him for the Open Championship at his home course of Royal Portrush next month, so he must be very happy. He could play with great freedom this week.

Rory McIlroy's runaway win at the Canadian Open was a portent for what is possible from the talented County Down star. He has ten top 10's on the PGA Tour this year and if he hits the ball as pure this week, then a five year major drought could come to an end.

Shane Lowry's second place finish behind McIlroy seems to have locked up the Offalyman's US tour card for next season. Lowry should love the challenge of Pebble Beach, with the wind and small greens the platform to showcase his creativity.

I'll be trying to find the winner today, so check back tomorrow for tips and an indication as to which players can shine in what is one of the toughest tests in golf.

Subscribe to Off The Ball's YouTube channel for more videos, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for the latest sporting news and content.


Share this article


Live: Title

Description

Added to queue
Removed from queue

On Air

Share

Share

Next up in queue

Title
Description
Duration

There are currently no podcasts in the queue

Go to podcasts

On Air

OTB

OTB

Up next

OTB AM

OTB AM

07:45 AM-09:30 AM

Share

OTB AM Repeat

OTB AM Repeat

09:30 AM-12:00 PM

Share

Friday Football Betting Show

Friday Football Betting Show

12:00 PM-01:00 PM

Share

OTB Gold

OTB Gold

01:00 PM-02:00 PM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

02:00 PM-03:00 PM

Share

Friday Night Racing

Friday Night Racing

03:00 PM-04:00 PM

Share

Rugby on Off The Ball

Rugby on Off The Ball

04:00 PM-05:00 PM

Share

OTB

OTB

05:00 PM-06:00 PM

Share

OTB Gold

OTB Gold

06:00 PM-07:00 PM

Share

OFF THE BALL

OFF THE BALL

07:00 PM-09:00 PM

Share

TEAM 33

TEAM 33

09:00 PM-10:00 PM

Share

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

Share on