Last week in his PGA Tour debut at the Palmetto Championship at Congaree, Wilco Nienaber averaged 367 yards on the measured holes. Photo: Mike Ehrmann, Getty Images
LA JOLLA, CALIFORNIA | Sometimes you have to fish a little to break the ice with a cold open when you walk up on a young player you’ve never met before and hope to strike up a conversation.
“Kevin Kisner says he outdrove you all day today in your practice round – can you confirm that.”
Wilco Nienaber (pronounced KNEE-nobber) laughed – hard. “No,” he said. “No. I cannot confirm that. You’ve heard lies.”
Kisner – who ranks 182nd on the PGA Tour with a modest 287.2 average driving distance – of course never said that. Anybody who says they’ve outdriven the lanky 21-year-old South African is probably lying. Because nobody is doing any such thing.
Nienaber is golf’s newest long-driving savant, and his legend is just starting to emerge. He’d already broken the European Tour record last November at the Joburg Open when he launched a 439-yard drive that lost a few y...
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