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‘It’s a Disgrace’: Days After Winning $3.6 Million, Matt Fitzpatrick’s Harsh Sentiments Unanimously Garners the Support of the Golf Community

Published 04/19/2023, 11:48 AM EDT

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Slow play has become a genuine issue in golf. Over the years, the increasing popularity of the sport has been threatened by the sluggish pace of the game. While some golfers have gone about doing their business swiftly, others still lag behind, which consumes more time than necessary, enough to put off young audiences. While no real step has been taken to tackle the concern, English golfer, Matt Fitzpatrick has made his opinions clear with a hard-hitting interview, where he condemned those who played it slow.

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Matt Fitzpatrick has sharp words for slow golfers

The 28-year-old golfer was in a celebratory mood after clinching the RBC Heritage last week, which secured him a paycheck worth $3.6 million. Yet, he condemned the slow play on Sunday, where he was paired with World No.4 Patrick Cantlay, considered one of the slowest golfers on tour.


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In his opinion, Fitzpatrick claimed that a time restriction should be forced upon golfers to maintain a steady rate. “If you’re in a three-ball, in my opinion, you should be round in four hours, four and a half absolute maximum – it’s a disgrace to get anywhere near that,” he said. “You’re talking five hours and 15, five and a half hours at some venues and it’s truly appalling.”


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USA Today via Reuters

However, despite the existence of the issue, there have been no stringent actions to counter the problem. “The problem is this conversation has gone on for years and years and years and no one ever done anything so I feel it’s almost a waste of time talking about it. I have strong opinions, but no one’s going to do anything about it.” Fitzpatrick said.

Did Playing with Patrick Cantlay lead to Fitzpatrick’s outburst?

The defending champion of the U.S. Open is one of the quickest golfers on the tour, but he was paired with 31-year-old Patrick Cantlay for Sunday’s final round. What followed was another slow round, with the latter being criticized all week for his unhurried pace of play.

Fitzpatrick himself took an indirect dig at his playing partner after the end of the round. “Slow play is a huge issue. I was forcing myself the whole day [on Sunday] to walk as slow as possible and I was still fast, I was still ready. I think it’s a real issue, way more needs to be done,” he claimed.

Indeed, the fans chipped in to support Fitzpatrick on the issue. Here’s how fans reacted:

One fan even expressed that he totally agrees with what Matt said about slow play in golf. “As amateurs we have to play in 4 hours, and as soon as we are slow the marshall comes and asks us to speed up,” he said.


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It all ended well for the Englishman, who won his first title in the country after his U.S. Open victory. On the other hand, Cantlay finished merely a stroke off the lead in third place.

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Written by:

Sharan Nair


One take at a time

Sharan Nair is a Senior Golf Writer at EssentiallySports. He constantly covers the ongoing PGA vs LIV Golf tussle as it progresses. With over 600 articles to his name, Sharan masters the sport with his in-depth knowledge and research that is reflected in his meticulous coverage of all the Majors.
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Edited by:

Manaal Siddiqui