U.S. Open afternoon conditions 'too tough', says USGA

The United States Golf Association (USGA) accepted conditions at the U.S. Open became too difficult during the third round.

The USGA was not expecting the wind to blow as hard as it did which resulted in lightning-fast greens.   -  AP

Conditions during the third round of the U.S. Open got "too tough", the United States Golf Association (USGA) admitted.

Zach Johnson said the USGA lost the Shinnecock Hills course, Phil Mickelson intentionally putted a moving ball somewhat out of frustration, and not a single player in the afternoon was able to break par.

The USGA admitted things got out of hand.

"It was a tale of two golf courses, and no doubt, we would admit, well-executed shots were not only not regarded, but were punished," said Mike Davis, the chief executive of the USGA and the man in charge of course setup.

"We would say that it was a very tough test, and really too tough this afternoon."

As a result of the course speeding up so much, Daniel Berger and Tony Finau, who made the cut by just one shot, will play in the final group Sunday after posting four-under 66s.

Each player went off early in the morning when Davis said the USGA felt good about the course.

He did say they were not expecting the wind to blow as hard as it did which resulted in lightning-fast greens which were borderline impossible to hold on approach shots.

The inability of players to hold greens throughout the week has resulted in 361 double bogeys or worse on the course through three rounds. That surpasses the most made in a tournament in 2018 by 65 and is 26 more than were made in the entire tournament at Shinnecock Hills in 2004, according to ESPN.

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