EDMOND — Colin Montgomerie has been impressed with Bernhard Langer’s success.
The 56-year-old has three victories this season and won the most recent event, the Senior Players Championship. He has everyone’s attention as he heads into the U.S. Senior Open at Oak Tree National, starting Thursday.
“He’s as good as the German football team, which is ridiculously good,” Montgomerie said of the team that advanced to the World Cup championship match after a 7-1 rout of Brazil.
Langer also has three runner-up finishes and 11 top 10s in 12 events. He has 2,362 points in the race for the Charles Schwab Cup; the second-place golfer, Jay Haas, is 882 points behind.
Langer is playing some of the best golf of his career.
“Well, the whole game has been pretty solid,” Langer said. “I’m hitting it pretty decent from tee to green and the putter is maybe a little bit better this year, just a fraction, than in previous years. It shows in the scores.”
This is the first Senior Open to be held at Oak Tree, but not the first significant event. Jeff Sluman won the 1988 PGA Championship at the course and Haas won the 2006 Senior PGA Championship.
Langer said Oak Tree is a good and difficult course.
“I would think it’s the hardest course I have ever played, or one of the hardest courses, the way it’s set up right now,” he said. “It’s just extremely demanding. And if the wind blows on top of that, it’s going to make it even harder.”
Langer will have competition. Kenny Perry, the defending U.S. Senior Open champion, has won three of the previous six senior major championships. Those victories give him confidence heading into the Senior Open.
“I look forward to the major tournaments now because I can be a little more aggressive,” he said. “I feel like I’m a lot more competitive and I have a lot more confidence. When I come in each week, I’m expecting to win. I may not win and I may not even make the cut, I don’t know, but I feel good mentally as I approach these events.”