TULSA, Okla. –An approaching cold front and winds forecast to blow at 40 mph on Day 2 of the PGA Championship prompted officials to leave the Southern Hills green untended.
Players were informed early Friday in a text message that “due to forecast high winds, not all practice and golf greens will be mowed today.”
Winds are forecast to be 20 mph sustained throughout the day with gusts to 40 mph later in the morning followed by a risk of thunderstorms around 5:00 p.m. CT. Overnight storms are forecast to include hail and heavy rain.
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PGA of America Championships manager Kerry Haigh said it was the first time the greens had not been mowed between rounds in the modern era of the PGA Championship.
“They’re a bit slower, obviously, but I think it was a good decision to keep it that way. You never know how many bursts you get on some of the greens, which are a bit exposed, and you don’t want to get into a area where it gets a bit dodgy maybe because of the balls rolling over the greens,” said Bernd Wiesberger, who was five in the lead after a second-round 67. “I think that was pretty fair.”
Not everyone was happy.
“I mean, we’re playing a major championship, not a monthly medal,” said Tyrrell Hatton, who shot 2-under 68 to sit seven off the lead. “You know they are [bouncing] everywhere. It’s so hard to find putts. So you can hit a good putt and they just don’t look like they’re going in, which is hard to accept when we’re playing in a major championship.
“From my perspective, I obviously hope the greens look better this weekend. But that said, I still need to be able to hit some decent shots to give me birdie opportunities, so let’s see where that is. lead us.”
The PGA of America does not advertise green speeds and some players warned earlier in the week that some of the putting surfaces, particularly Nos. 9, 10 and 18, could become unplayable due to steep slopes. .
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