If it was the USGA’s intention to get people talking about Chambers Bay then they succeeded.

A number of players simply couldn’t come to terms with the challenge and thought it was unfair.

As golf spectators, do we prefer to see the top players struggling? Or would we rather see them carding low scores round after round?

Members of the team at National Club Golfer debate the issue…

James Savage – I get a little tired of the birdie-fest week in, week out, particularly on the PGA Tour. It’s no surprise to see them struggle when faced with something a bit different as they are used to being spoilt. 

It seems to me that whenever players get anything other than perfect course conditions they start moaning about it.  

Louis Oosthuizen played the final three rounds at Chambers Bay in 11 under par while all I heard from others was excuses. 

I don’t particularly enjoy seeing players struggle but it bugs me when they blame the course. 

Was Chambers Bay a USGA mistake?


Dan Murphy – I like to see the players tested but not necessarily humiliated. I don’t enjoy seeing them playing courses that are simply unfair. 
There was a way to score well at Chambers Bay, eight players finished under par on a par-70 course" I love watching the best players battling with the elements as that is something we have to do throughout the year.

Ideally, in a Major, there will be a 64 or a 65 out there, but most of the field will struggle to break 70. 

In the Open, it’s different. Depending on the conditions, 67 might be average one day, while 76 could move you up the leaderboard on the next – that’s as it should be.

In all the Majors, the only thing that really matters is that a course and a championship are identifying the best players.

Jordan Spieth halfway to Major Grand Slam


Mark Townsend – I like to watch players struggle, more so around the greens than off the tee where a load of thick rough gobbles up a tee shot that is five yards wide of a narrow landing strip.

There was a way to score well at Chambers Bay, eight players finished under par on a par-70 course, you just had to relentlessly hit brilliant shot after brilliant shot, or get a bit lucky from time to time.

My weakness is chipping so I tend to sit up when players near the business end of things on a hole, and smirk and rewind Sky when things go wrong with the rounded clubs. 

What’s in Jordan Spieth’s US Open winning bag?


Karl Hansell – I want to see the best players in the world on the best courses, and I don’t think Chambers Bay lived up to its side of the bargain.

I want to see greens that run straight and true, and if the golfer is good enough to read and then strike a putt from 25 feet away then I want to see it end up where it belongs, in the hole, not bobbling around as if the green was made of cauliflower, as McIlroy put it.

If somebody ends up in trouble, you want it to be because they gambled and it didn’t pay off, not because, as Gary Player said, they chipped to within a foot but the crazy golf greens caused their ball to then roll fifty feet away.

It’s pretty simple – good play should be well-rewarded and bad play punished. And all the management team need to do is set the course up to best facilitate that.


Damien Wilde – Majors should be played under the best conditions – I’m not factoring in weather to this.

You wouldn’t have the FA Cup final being played at Gigg Lane.

Chambers Bay will be remembered for the wrong reasons.