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And so it was.

Slugger White, the tour’s vice president of rules and competition, disputed the idea that course was on the verge of being unplayable.

“The golf course is not unplayable,” he said.

White conceded a few greens became “crusty,” particularly at Nos. 2 and 8, and that the staff was thinking there would be more cloud cover. He went out to the greens after the last group came through and said, “I saw no issues.”

“Players always want firm and fast,” he said. “It seems like when we give them firm and fast, they don’t want firm and fast. I hear Tiger say it was too soft on Thursday. And then some guy walks off the tee and says, ‘Have you guys run out of water?’ Where do you go? We’re doing the best we can.”

Watney didn’t entirely agree.

“There’s firm and fast, and then there’s this,” Watney said. “I mean, this is pretty extreme.”

Snedeker not only boosted his chances for a second win this year, it might be enough for him to be a Ryder Cup pick. He had four birdies in seven holes, and equally impressive was finishing with nine straight pars.

“Just got on a run with the putter,” Snedeker said. “Was on the edge all day. Got some lucky breaks out there. You just can’t hit greens out there, I don’t care what anybody says. The greens are pretty much unplayable for the most part. You can’t hit them. Just really, really a tough test.”

And this from a guy with a 68.

The compliments were far less flattering down the leaderboard.

“The worst course setup I have ever played in 13 years on tour. They have ruined what is a great course, greens like concrete stupid pins,” Ian Poulter said on Twitter after his 76. He followed that with another tweet: “played poorly today & no excuse for my play I was rubbish. but I do know my job & trade & the golf course today was borderline unplayable.”

Most extreme was the turnaround at the top.

Watney had a three-shot lead walking off the 10th hole. Three holes later, it was gone.

With his first poor swing of the day, Watney went from the middle of the 11th fairway to the right bunker and made bogey, while Garcia holed a 20-foot birdie putt. Watney followed with a tee shot well to the left to set up another bogey, and the lead was gone. And on the par-5 13th, Garcia made birdie to take the lead.

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