Editors' BlogJune 16, 2007

Go-Go Goggin

All rounds should take less than three and a half hours.__ Royal Dornoch Golf Club__ [#image: /photos/55adb4acb01eefe207f8dbb1]|||72589445|||

Mathew Goggin’s new nickname should be the Tasmanian Speed Devil. The native of Tasmania, Australia went around all 18 holes at Oakmont in two hours and 45 minutes this morning. He teed off the first hole at 10:05 a.m. and was done before the seventh group of Kenneth Ferrie and Nick O’Hern had reached the ninth green.

__“He usually goes pretty quickly,” __said Goggin’s caddie Brian Sullivan. “I think he was actually trying to go slowly.” Goggin was offered a marker, when he was the last guy on the course to finish at 10-over par, but he said that he preferred to play by himself. The reason?“So I could get done quickly,” he said. “I really didn’t give it too much thought.”

The Speed Devil has actually played alone two times before, once at Callaway Gardens and once at Disney, with mixed success. “I’ve had the worst score making the cut before, that’s nothing new,” said Goggin. “I’m just glad they didn’t do it in reverse, where you get to tee of last on the tenth tee. . . . It was actually a lot of fun because I play quickly.”

When asked if his putting suffered — he had 32 putts including miss of a tap-in on the ninth — because he was unable to see other players' putts, Goggin said no. “It’s been suffering all week,” he said. “It’s been a general theme. I’ve seen lots of other guys putt and I’ve still missed those.” Still playing alone was somewhat difficult. It’s definitely not normal. “It’s hard,” said Goggin. “You actually have to slow down just to get in a normal rhythm.”

Sullivan tried everything he could to get his player to slow down. “I was actually conscious of trying to stay back to try to force him to pull it back a little bit,” he said. “I actually started reading greens — I normally don’t — just so he wasn’t like take the pin out and go.” Still there were times where Goggin got way ahead of his caddie and just stood still and waited. “It’s tough, you hit it in the bunker, he’s got to rake, and I’m up by the green waiting,” said Goggin.

Although the round was not as fast as Mark Carnevale’s two hour and 28 minute round in 1994, it still was pretty fast. “I actually need a couple of caddies to keep up with me, one up front and one behind,” said Goggin.

--Jeff Patterson

(Photo: Getty Images)

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