On A String
U.S. Open 2023: This pro's bunker shot almost spinning back to his feet shows how diabolical LACC's greens are
It's one thing to hear about how diabolical LACC's greens are, and it's one thing to see Johnson Wagner throw some balls around the course on Golf Channel to get a feel for the wild undulations. It's another thing entirely to actually witness the world's best hit actual shots into the greens, backspin and all.
Canada's Adam Svensson learned how CrazyTown, USA, the North Course's greens are early in his opening round of the 123rd U.S. Open. After starting one under through two, Svensson missed the fairway at the 403-yard par-4 third and then hit his second shot into a greenside bunker well right of the hole location. With the severity of the slope on the left portion of the third green, where the flagstick is located on Thursday, players who miss right are actually hitting it well past the flag and allowing it to feed back toward the hole. Because of how severe it is, though, balls are feeding well past the hole on their way back.
Or, in Svensson's case, zipping well past the hole and nearly rolling all the way back to the bunker he just hit from (fortunately, it didn't make it that far). Check out this ridiculous shot:
Ruthless is right. What else is Svennson supposed to do here (other than put a touch less spin on the ball)? It nearly got all the way to the rough on the other side before beginning it's journey back. Other than hitting the flag, there's no way to stop this thing.
Svensson's distance to the hole here was about 25 yards. He landed at around 35, watched it bounce and skip to around 40, and then watched as it rolled all the way back. It's actual distance in shot-tracker terms? Seven yards. Insane stuff.
The Canadian went on to make bogey on the hole but still managed to make the turn in one-under 34. He's made two more bogeys since, putting him at one over for the tournament through 14 holes.