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19th Hole

Hot & Cold: Where strokes were won and lost at the Wyndham Championship

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In “Hot & Cold,” we’ll be focusing each week on what specific areas of the game players excelled and disappointed in throughout the previous tournament. On Sunday, J.T. Poston claimed the first PGA Tour title of his career, and here’s a look at where some of the most notable players gained and lost strokes over the four days of action at the Wyndham Championship.

Hot

J.T. Poston’s ball striking in Greensboro made the difference as he went 72 holes without a dropped shot on his way to victory. The 26-year-old gained 10.4 strokes over the field tee to green over the four days of action, eclipsing his previous best performance in this area by almost three strokes. Check out the clubs Poston used on his way to victory last week in our WITB piece here.

Viktor Hovland continued his excellent form at last week’s Wyndham Championship, gaining 9.2 strokes tee to green. Since teeing it up at the API back in March, the Oslo native has gained strokes both off the tee and with his irons in eight straight events.

Another youngster who continues to dazzle is Matthew Wolff, and at last week’s event, the 20-year-old gained 5.6 strokes over the field for his approach play.

Cold

Jordan Spieth’s third round implosion stole the headlines in Greensboro, and the Texan’s numbers make for grim reading. Spieth lost 7.5 strokes tee to green for the three days he was in town at the Wyndham Championship – the third-worst total in this department of his career.

Martin Kaymer’s missed cut last week cost the German his PGA Tour card, and it was the multiple major champion’s putting which proved very costly in Greensboro. Kaymer lost six strokes with the flat-stick for the two days he featured, which is the worst putting performance of his career.

Zach Johnson won’t be competing in the FedEx Cup Playoffs this month, and last week the American suffered a dismal two days with his short game. Johnson lost a combined 6.1 strokes on and around the greens in Greensboro to end a disappointing season.

 

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Gianni is the Assistant Editor at GolfWRX. He can be contacted at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @giannimosquito

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19th Hole

Billy Horschel wants armlock ban: ‘I’ll give the belly putter back and take away the armlock’

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Billy Horschel has caused a stir this week at the RBC Heritage, with the 34-year-old making the controversial claim that the popular armlock putting technique should be banned as “guys are doing it too good”.

The Florida native explained that the method needs reviewing due to the ability to change the grip position so that it’s “parallel or matches the face” and that he’d even happily exchange the technique for the belly putter.

“I mean, I’m bringing up something different here, and I’m sort going out on a limb, but I don’t think this arm lock putting is — should be allowed either. I’ll give the belly putter back and take away the arm lock.

I think when you look at what guys are doing now with the arm lock and moving the grips to the side where it’s parallel or matches the face and then when you do that up against your arm, I mean, it’s — you know that face is dead square and that face doesn’t rotate at all.

It’s just sort of locked in. Guys are doing it too good.”

Horschel further revealed that there is “a little more flow” in his view with the belly putter and flirted with calling the armlock, a technique very popular on tour, the dreaded ‘A’ word: Anchoring.

“Yes, you could say it’s anchored. I don’t know because I guess anchored is having one point against somewhere and a fixed point. I know that’s not fixed, but it’s something similar to an anchor style.

Like I said, I would rather give them the belly putter back. I think there is a little bit more flow. Some guys going that way are becoming great putters, but it’s just something guys are trying and seeing some benefits for.”

Bryson DeChambeau, Matt Kuchar, Bernhard Langer and now Kevin Kisner are some of Horschel’s peers currently using the armlock method. It’ll be very interesting to see what response we get from them (if any) in defense of the technique.

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19th Hole

Tiger Woods appears to be renovating his practice facility

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Tiger Woods’ home practice facility seems to be getting a makeover this spring, and it has got golf fans speculating on the 15-time major champion’s future.

A photo taken and shared this week by pilot Dakota Atkinson shows Woods’ backyard under construction, with three of the facilities’ four greens being renovated.

Per Tiger Woods’ design website, the facility is broken down as the following:

“Tiger started with a flat, 3.5-acre area, and, teaming with TGR Design, directed its design, layout, and shaping. The result is a practice facility of tournament-conditioned turf and bunkering that recreates the look, feel, and playability of various major courses. Using a variety of turf found on the PGA TOUR, the design allows Tiger to hit almost any shot of 150 yards or less to one of four unique greens.”

What this signifies for Tiger’s future is unclear, with many golf fans suggesting that the renovation could well be for his son Charlie. In contrast, others believe it’s a positive sign for Tiger’s potential comeback.

It’s worth noting that many tour pros have commented on Woods’ good progress from his injuries, and that Rory McIlroy told media before the Masters that: “When you hear of these things and you look at the car and you see the crash, it’s like, you think he’s going to be in a hospital bed for six months. But he was actually doing better than that”

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19th Hole

Will Zalatoris on the one hole he wishes he could do over at the 2021 Masters

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Fresh from lighting up the Masters with a brilliant performance last week, Will Zalatoris featured on Doug Flutie’s SiriusXM podcast Flutie Flakescast, where the rookie broke down his week at Augusta.

*All quotes courtesy of Doug Flutie’s SiriusXM podcast Flutie Flakescast*

The 24-year-old finished one stroke behind Hideki Matsuyama at the event, and when asked which shots he would take back if he had the chance, Zalatoris was quick to highlight his week-long performance on the par 5 13th hole.

“I think it’s any collection of shots on 13. I played it at even par for the week, which you just can’t do. I mean, you see all those guys knock one tight out of the trees and make eagle or make a good birdie and that’s what jumpstarts them to win the golf tournament. And I just didn’t have it.

I had about a 50 or 60 foot look that weirdly that green is just so slow. I don’t know what it was. I had, you know, I had two 50 footers over the last two days and on that hole and I three-putted both of them and that’s the difference right there.”

In contrast to Zalatoris, Hideki played the 13th hole in four-under-par for the week, including making an eagle on the hole during Friday’s round.

“You know, I just needed to play 13 in a couple under par, just like I would have basically just played average golf and you know it just, it is what it is. But that’s the one to me where it’s like every single day I’m walking off 13, like dang nabbit, like I just need one shot, one shot, one shot.”

The Californian also revealed on the show that his first Masters’ experience flew by, and he wishes he could have slowed the week down.

“Man, I wish I could have slowed it down. I did a good job of staying in the moment, but I mean that seven days that I was there felt like it went by in seven minutes. It was just, you know, every day I walked over that bridge on 12 and look back just cause it’s like, you know, I worked my ass off to get to this point and I finally got there and yeah, a lot of gratitude, a lot of appreciation. And obviously I knew I was playing some good golf, and so, you know, it’s a really good feeling to be frustrated to lose by one.”

The 24-year-old returns to action this week at the RBC Heritage.

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