With the US Open just under two weeks away, there's been plenty of talk about its location.
If you’d have taken three guesses about what the pre-2015 US Open talk would have been about a year ago, you might not have gotten the right answer.
You would have been well within your rights to mention the best player in the world, Rory McIlroy. Or maybe Tiger Woods, as he tries to win his first major since this very tournament in 2008. You may even have spoken about the fact that more Northern Irishmen have won it in the last five editions than Americans.
Instead, we’ve been drawn towards the course itself, Chambers Bay, and its links set-up that will host the tournament for the very first time.
It’s probably best to start with what Mike Davis, the USGA executive director who will determine the way the course is set-up, had to say about it.
“The idea of coming in and playing two practice rounds and having your caddie just walk it and using your yardage book, that person’s done. Will not win the US Open,” he said.
So, what have the men who will be playing it had to say about it?
Ian Poulter delivered perhaps the most memorable contribution to the Chambers Bay debate so far with this tweet at the end of April:
Ryan Palmer was also unconvinced about the site for the 115th anniversary of the tournament.
Palmer said: “As far as the greens are concerned, it’s not a championship golf course.”
However, Ryan Moore, who grew up near Chambers Bay, has been slightly less scathing than his tour mates, saying: “It can play like two completely different golf courses pretty much. If they don’t get it super firm and fast – very different. If they get it really firm and fast, it can get very, very interesting.”
Phil Mickelson will be looking to complete his career Grand Slam by winning in the Pacific Northwest. He, like Tiger Woods, played the course recently and said he came away feeling intrigued.
“It’s a very interesting golf course,” Mickelson said.
“I thought it was a modern-day links course and everything about it was a British Open to me.”
Woods, having spent seven hours on the course on his first day there, was also a little more receptive, but admitted it will prove tough.
“It’s very challenging in the sense that Mike [Davis, USGA director] has so many options that he can present us as challenges off the tees or into the greens,” he said.
“There are so many different numbers that you have to know off the tees and how that’s going to play. There’s just so many options.
“He [Davis] could make it to where it’s just brutal or he can make it to where it’s pretty easy and give us a combination of both, and then switch it up on every other hole,” he added.