There will be no bunkers at the PGA Championship
By mustang6560 on 7/25/12
It's funny how quickly the majors come and go.

Just last Wednesday we were getting revved up for the 141st Open Championship. And now it's the Wednesday following The Open and we can't even see Ernie Els's win in the rear-view mirror anymore. But, the good news is we have one more major to look forward to, the PGA Championship.

The final major of the year will be played at the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort in Kiawah, South Carolina next month, and as you might expect, the course is full of sand. But, good news for Dustin Johnson, the PGA of America announced there will be no bunkers on the Ocean Course. Every grain of sand will be considered a waste bunker.
The PGA released a special notice Tuesday to inform players that all bunkering at Kiawah Island’s Ocean Course will be considered “sandy areas” and will be played “through the green.” For all practical purposes, the sandy areas, even when they look like traditional bunkers, will be played like waste areas, where players will be allowed to ground their club, remove loose impediments and even take practice swings.

In essence, the PGA is declaring that there will be no bunkers at the Ocean Course.

“Whistling Straits was obviously just the opposite,” said Kerry Haigh, the PGA’s managing director of championships.
In case you need a refresher, Dustin ruined his chances of winning the 2010 PGA Championship because he grounded his club in a bunker at Whistling Straits, which is a no-no. He was assessed a two-stroke penalty and missed out at the opportunity to play in the playoff against eventual winner Martin Kaymer and Bubba Watson.

Dustin is from South Carolina so I imagine he'll be a favorite to win the PGA Championship outside the usual suspects (Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, etc).

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Image via Flickr, Keith Allison

[ comments ]
bobhooe says:
srogers13 says:
Par for the course for Kiawah. Every championship played there, including the Ryder Cup, was played with the same rule. I believe they also say that is the rule for day to day play.
Banker85 says:
no issues with it. Makes it easier on everyone. DJ got no chance Tiger is a lock.
Kurt the Knife says:
kinda how I play everyday. I even occasionally use the "hand wedge" to get out of bunker...uhm, waste areas.
jfurr says:
Go Dustin! I think I have a hook up on a ticket to a practice day. I've been to other PGA tourneys but not a practice day before.
GolfnDawg says:
So with these "sandy areas" being played as waste areas there should be no raking after the shot. That could make for some very interesting lies.
srogers13 says:
They said they would be raked every morning, and there would be rakes in areas that could be used as courtesies, but what ever the lie is, the lie is.
mmontisano says:
that whole bunker debacle upset me. only 3 people should be allowed to give out penalty strokes; an official, your playing partner and yourself. and no penalties given out after the fact. after the shot is played, it stands.

that should get rid of the armchair rules officials. no one seemed to notice he grounded his club until after his next chip and that caused him a shot at the championship.

the downside is that some championships may claimed the wrong way. but then that person will get deemed a cheater and will be more closely watched in the future. but it will help players know the rules better so they can call those penalties and know they're in the right.

it may help people play faster too. if they aren't sure what the ruling should be, they'll hurry up and hit the shot to avoid a penalty.

I know people will poke holes in this opinion, but I like it.
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