Golf is supposed to return to its normally scheduled programing with a visit to the Travelers Championship this week, but proceedings at Shinnecock Hills – specifically, the brutal third-round conditions and the conduct of Phil Mickelson – continue to take precedent. Overnight, Australian time, at TPC River Highlands, one of the sport’s marquee attractions spoke out on both.
Jason Day, who missed the cut at the US Open, is in this week’s field. And the former world No.1 didn’t mince words when asked his thoughts on the controversies surrounding Mickelson and the USGA.
“I mean it’s obviously disappointing to see what Phil did,” Day told a scrum of reporters. “A lot of people have mixed reviews about what he did.”
Although Mickelson was assessed a two-shot penalty for swatting a moving ball on the green, a contingent – including his fellow players – believes Mickelson should have been disqualified. Count Day among this group.
“On his part I don’t think it saved him at all because he ended up walking off with a 10,” Day continued. “It’s just unfortunate that it happened at the USGA’s tournament, where they enforce the rules, like the R&A. And I think they may have, they probably should have enforced a different outcome for Phil.
“But it is what it is. It’s done. It’s just disappointing that that is overshadowing the winner of the whole week. I think if they had it back again, they may have chosen a different outcome.”
Day also had some choice words for American golf’s governing body, specifically in the way it runs the US Open.
“It’s more the course, about how they set it up. Because Saturday was a total… it was like two different golf courses, practically, on the greens Saturday versus Sunday,” Day said. “I just wish they would leave it alone and just let it go. Not saying to let the greens go and let them dry out and make it unfair, I’m just saying plan accordingly and hopefully whatever the score finishes, it finishes, whether it’s under par or over par.”
This will be Day’s fourth appearance at the Travelers Championship. His best finish is a T-18. Jordan Spieth is the defending champion.