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19th Hole

Brooks Koepka hits out at the “stuffiness” and “country club atmosphere” attached to golf

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Never one to pull punches, Brooks Koepka has slammed the “stuffiness” and “country club atmosphere” associated with golf which he feels is damaging the progression of the sport.

In an in-depth interview with GQ Magazine, the four-time major champion discussed a multitude of topics, and Koepka explained that the “gentleman sport” tag attached to golf is one of the reasons preventing more people from getting involved in the game.

“Hockey, you go to blows and then sit in the box for a couple minutes. Golf’s just held to a different standard. Because it’s supposed to be a gentleman’s sport. And that’s where I think they lose a lot of people. They just do.”

Asked what he would change about the sport if he had the chance, Koepka was quick to sound off on the “stuffiness” and “country club atmosphere” which he believes is one of the biggest problems the sport has in attracting more support.

“One thing I’d change is maybe the stuffiness. Golf has always had this persona of the triple-pleated khaki pants, the button-up shirt, very country club atmosphere, where it doesn’t always have to be that way. That’s part of the problem. 

Everybody always says, ‘You need to grow the game.’ Well, why do you need to be so buttoned-up? ‘You have to take your hat off when you get in here.’ ‘You’re not allowed in here unless you’re a member—or unless the member’s here.’ Really? 

I just never really liked the country club atmosphere. I know that drives a lot of people away from liking me. But just ’cause this golf club has such prestige and the members are all famous and have a lot of money…like, why can’t I show up and just go play the golf course? Why do I have to sit in my car and wait for the member?”

The 29-year-old further explained how he doesn’t feel like no rules would be the answer, but how a more relaxed approach would prevent the feeling of “walking on eggshells” when at a golf course.

“I’m not saying no rules is the answer. But it’s like, you want everyone to enjoy themselves when they’re there, you don’t want to feel like you’re walking on eggshells when you arrive at the golf course. I don’t like feeling like I’m walking on eggshells everywhere I go.”

Brooks Koepka is in action this week at the Honda Classic and will tee it up alongside Matthew Wolff and Keith Mitchell for the opening two rounds.

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Gianni is the Assistant Editor at GolfWRX. He can be contacted at gianni@golfwrx.com. Follow him on Twitter @giannimosquito

19th Hole

Tiger weighs in on the distance debate: ‘They should have been worried a long time ago, but the genie’s out of the bag now’

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The distance debate in golf continues to rumble on, and this week, the greatest player of his generation had his say claiming that the game’s governing bodies should have been worried a long time ago about the surge in distance amongst Tour pros.

Asked before this week’s Zozo about the recent urge players have to find more distance, Woods spoke about the importance of length in the game and how it’s more accessible than ever for players to find an extra gear or two off the tee.

“Distance has always been an advantage. Now that we have the tools, that being the launch monitor, the fitting of the golf clubs, the adjustability. I think all that plays into the fact that you’re able to maximize the capabilities of a driver.

There’s no reason why you can’t pick up more yardage, and guys have done that. They’ve changed shafts, they’ve changed lofts, they’ve changed weights on their heads and length of clubs. Driving is such a huge part of the game and it’s so advantageous if you’re able to get the ball out there. It just makes the game so much easier.”

When asked by media if the game’s authorities should be worried about the recent surge in the added distance in the game, Woods claimed that though he would like to be able to see a complete rollback, he doesn’t see it happening.

“They should have been worried a long time ago, but the genie’s out of the bag now. It’s about what do we do going forward, and how soon can they do it. I don’t know if they’re going—you’re not going to stop the guys who are there right now. Guys are figuring out how to carry the ball 320-plus yards, and it’s not just a few of them. There’s a lot of guys can do it. That’s where the game’s going.

There’s only going to be a small amount of property that we can do, we can alter golf courses. I just don’t see how they can roll everything back. I would like to be able to see that, as far as our game, but then we go back down the road of what do you bifurcate, at what level? So that’s a long discussion we’ve had for a number of years, for 20-plus years now, and I think it’s only going to continue.” 

Tiger will tee off for his first round at the Zozo Championship this Thursday at 1.45 PM ET.

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19th Hole

The surprising event Tiger Woods hints at playing before the Masters

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Many people were under the impression that this week’s Zozo Championship would be Tiger Woods’ last stop before heading to Augusta National in three weeks, but not so fast.

According to the Big Cat himself, the Houston Open may well be on the 15-time major champion’s radar, which is the very week before the Masters kicks off.

Speaking to media at Sherwood CC this week, Woods said

“Well, I think my plan is just to play and practice. I don’t know if I’m going to play Houston or not. I’m not playing next week, and we’ll see how this week goes and make a decision from there.”

That event that he has ruled himself out of next week is the Bermuda Championship, and further explaining his preparation before the Masters, Woods brought up the possibility of Houston once more to reporters:

“This entire year has been different for all of us. And my run-up to Augusta is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. That’s just the way it is. The whole idea is to be ready in a few weeks and whether or not that’s playing one more event, whether that’s Houston or just playing here at Zozo, just making sure that I’m ready for Augusta.”

Woods has never before played the Houston Open, and in 2020 it will be the first event to have fans back on-site since the Tour’s restart, with 2,000 spectators to be allowed through the gates each day of tournament play.

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19th Hole

The 6 best #GolfWRX photos on Instagram today (10.21.20)

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In this segment, we’ll be taking a look at some of the best #GolfWRX tagged photos on Instagram. In case you aren’t already, there’s a whole load of action going on at our page, so follow us: @golfwrx

Let’s get to it then, here are six of the best #GolfWRX photos from the past 24 hours.

Coming to The Hive today!

Custom matte black coating with white and pink paint fill on this haywoodgolf signature putter.

Teacher Kerrod Gray on how to hit 3-wood off the ground.

Custom FSU theme Scotty Cameron Phantom X from The Golf Garage.

Bullseye putters. Yay or nay, WRXers?

SIM 3-wood for TW this week, maybe….

Get hashtagging your golf posts #GolfWRX for your chance to feature in our best of Instagram posts in the future!

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