Casey happy with Merion test

  • Last Updated: June 15 2013, 23:28 BST

Paul Casey admitted the test provided by Merion in the 113th US Open was turning his hair gray, despite a third round of 71 which left him inside the top 20.

Paul Casey: Enjoying the challenge
Paul Casey: Enjoying the challenge

Casey was ranked third in the world in 2009 but is currently 168th after struggling with form and fitness, most notably in 2012 after breaking his collarbone while snowboarding.

The former Ryder Cup star also missed last year's US Open with a shoulder injury, but came through qualifying at Walton Heath last month thanks to rounds of 74 and 64.

At 6,996 yards and a par 70, Merion's East Course - which last staged the US Open in 1981 - was meant to offer up the chance of a first sub-63 round in major championship history, but such predictions had proved well wide of the mark.

"It was cracking all the guys up at the beginning of the week, guys like Frank Nobilo (a former player turned TV commentator) saying it's going to be 62s or 63s around here," Casey said.

"And we didn't know which golf course he was talking about, because we knew this was going to be a brutal test.

"I love the fact that this is a short golf course and it's making my hair go gray, that's all I know. Golf courses don't have to be long to be difficult. This is a wonderful example of that.

"It's a little tortuous, but I enjoy the challenge and I think the rest of the guys do. I think the fans appreciate how difficult this is, as well. They get an idea of how difficult this place is. It's a thrill to play a golf course like this."

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