Ahead of his US PGA Championship debut, the Japanese player’s somewhat unorthodox preparations had him finalising his club choices for his opening round by playing 18 holes with a full set of Srixon irons and a full set of Bridgestone irons.
Higa's third Major Championship start comes off the back of a string of missed cuts, but he will be hopeful that his last minute equipment change will help him recapture the early-season form that saw him secure a fourth place finish at the Hero Indian Open, and a tie for 11th at the Thailand Classic.
The 27-year-old typically has a Bridgestone heavy bag with just one Srixon four iron, but was eager to test out some more options for this week in order to have the best set-up to navigate the thick rough, narrow fairways and long par-fives of Oak Hill Country Club.
Higa, who earned his DP World Tour playing privileges by finishing top of the JGTO Money List last year, ended up keeping the same Bridgestone muscle back lower irons (7-PW) he has used for three years but changed out his five iron for a Srixon five iron and six iron. He also kept his Srixon four iron.
Speaking through his exhausted caddie, Higa explained his set-up for this week.
“We have played from the seven iron to the pitching wedge for three years now the muscle back from Bridgestone,” he said.
“He felt really confident on shots with these.
“He usually uses the Srixon four iron, the ZX5, which is really good on the tee and from the fairway.
“We normally use a five iron from the same Bridgestone series as that one (7-PW) but this week we might have the six iron from Srixon because we have some thick rough and some longer distances and with the six iron we can go a little bit further with a little bit more higher balls.
“We are definitely thinking of that six iron, and the five iron also, because he can go a little bit more further from the thick rough.”
He tees up alongside Americans Trey Mullinax and Josh Speight for his opening two rounds.