Bryson DeChambeau ‘mockery’ leaves Sheffield’s Matt Fitzpatrick frustrated

Sheffield's Matt Fitzpatrick.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)Sheffield's Matt Fitzpatrick.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Sheffield's Matt Fitzpatrick. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
It’s a long way from Las Vegas to Wentworth, but Sin City was very much on the minds of joint leaders Sheffield’s Matt Fitzpatrick and Shane Lowry at the halfway stage of the BMW PGA Championship.

Open champion Lowry will contest next week’s CJ Cup in Vegas after belatedly being granted an invite, while Fitzpatrick noted with dismay the opening 62 from US Open winner Bryson DeChambeau in the current PGA Tour event in the same city. “I’m fed up of seeing everyone talk about it,” Fitzpatrick said of DeChambeau’s “bomb and gauge” approach to the game after he and Lowry both shot 65 on Friday.

“I’m going to be biased because I’m not quite the longest, but at Winged Foot – fair play to him, he won (the US Open) and shot six under – the fairways were tight as hell and I drove it brilliantly, I actually played pretty well, and I’m miles behind.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“He’s in the rough and miles up and he’s just hitting wedges everywhere. It just makes a bit of a mockery of it I think.

“I looked at ShotTracker yesterday, some of the places he hit it and when he’s on, there’s no point, is there?

“It doesn’t matter if I play my best, he’s going to be 50 yards in front of me off the tee and the only thing I can compete with him is putting, and that’s just ridiculous.”

DeChambeau topped the driving distance category on the PGA Tour last year with an average of 322 yards, while Fitzpatrick was 121st with an average of 294.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Asked if he wanted the game’s governing bodies to limit the distance achieved by modern equipment, Fitzpatrick added: “I really hope they do. In my opinion it’s not a skill to hit the ball a long way.

“I could put on 40 pounds. I could go and see a biomechanist, I could put another two inches on my driver and I could gain 40 yards. But the skill in my opinion is to hit the ball straight.

“He’s just taking the skill out of it in my opinion. I’m sure lots will disagree. It’s just daft.”

Back-to-back chip-ins, the first from a bunker for a birdie and the second from the back of the fourth green for an eagle, had helped Fitzpatrick cover his first 16 holes in nine under par and took him to 14 under overall.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Surpassing Paul McGinley’s record halfway total of 13 under, set in 2008, looked to be a formality, only for the 26-year-old to pull his approach to the eighth into the water surrounding the green.

At 12 under par, Fitzpatrick and Lowry held a one-shot lead over Tyrrell Hatton, the overnight joint-leader recovering from a bogey on the first to return a 67.

Defending champion, Sheffield’s Danny Willett carded a second consecutive 71.

Support The Yorkshire Post and become a subscriber today.

Your subscription will help us to continue to bring quality news to the people of Yorkshire. In return, you’ll see fewer ads on site, get free access to our app and receive exclusive members-only offers.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

So, please - if you can - pay for our work. Just £5 per month is the starting point. If you think that which we are trying to achieve is worth more, you can pay us what you think we are worth. By doing so, you will be investing in something that is becoming increasingly rare. Independent journalism that cares less about right and left and more about right and wrong. Journalism you can trust.

Thank you, James Mitchinson. Editor.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.