A view of the enormous finishing green at Indianwood. The beast measures 24,000 square feet. Bernhard Langer said of it:
It’s the biggest green I’ve ever seen. There are so many humps and bumps and so many options with pins that you want to know where each of these humps are, and the beginning of it and the end of it makes a difference. You need to know that stuff. It makes a big difference every time you play the hole but especially on the 72nd hole. This is not a green you just want to hit, you want to be somewhere near the pin.
And the USGA’s Jeff Hall on the pin locations there:
When we looked at the 18th green, I think it was a case of which ones we don’t want to use. There’s plenty of choices. I think at the end of the day we want to provide a stern test, and we want that to be reflected in the hole locations. They’re challenging. They’re fair.
What I found, as we went through the setup, the greens, excepting for 18, are generally pretty small and have quite a bit of pitch. Almost to the point where one side of the green is I’m sure the players are putting notes in their yardage book with a big red X. This is a bad place to be if the hole locations appear.
On 18, there’s almost mini greens throughout that particular green. But we’re looking for challenging hole locations. There’s a lot of variety. The putting green is 51 yards deep. The tape measure that we used did stretch that long. So we were complete. I had my concerns about that from the start. We were able to get from back to front.
I think you’ll find—it always amazes me, when you watch these players play their practice rounds, we don’t give them the hole location sheet for the week. We’ve got a master sheet that we use. But I’ll tell you what, they’re awfully good at figuring it out. If you spend any time looking down there and see where we go with the hole locations, I bet they’ve nailed most of them as to where we’re going to go.
A lot of choices there. We’ll have to be mindful of the weather. Tomorrow it’s predicted what wind we get is going to be an east wind, which will result in the second shot being straight into the wind there. So we’re going to be mindful of that. If we’ve got rain in the forecast, we’re going to look for some higher ground, if possible. But it’s a case of trying to find proper balance; back, front, left, right. We don’t want a setup that favors players that shape the ball one direction versus the other. We’re trying to identify the best player, not just a certain type of player.