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Golf Australia Express : GA Express 193
To create these mounds, dirt had to be extracted to fill in most of the sandy, swampy, 415-acre property. The best fill came from the area blueprinted for the 17th, which the original drawings featured a green on a peninsula with much less water. With the construction crew digging deeper for more fill, Alice Dye suggested creating a lake with an island green and outlined her idea on the back of a cocktail napkin. More than 42,000 cubic metres of dirt was hauled from the lake site leaving the island green. It proved to be a design masterstroke ahead of the course’s opening in 1980 and for the past 36 years its notoriety has made it one of the most recognisable holes in golf, a hole that is copied by new course developers, especially in Asia, more than any other. For all its sadistic qualities for fans, the famous 17th hole has its admirers and detractors among those golfers who have played it under the pump. “It’s like having a three o’clock appointment for a root canal,” Open Champion Mark Calcavecchia once said. “You’re thinking about it all morning and you feel bad all day. You kind of know, sooner or later, you’ve got to get to it.” Adam Scott concurs. On the eve of his defence of the Players title in 2005, he said the hole gets into your mind early in the round. “It's fantastic because you know all day, you know 17 is coming,” he said. “You put it out of your mind all day, and when you get to the middle of the 16th fairway, it's sitting right there, you cannot look, you've got to have a look. “It's just a fabulous hole, it's just a wedge or a 9-iron but it creates havoc in everyone's mind. I think that's what makes the drama of this tournament and this course.” TV Commentator Johnny Miller put it a little more succinctly: "Every course needs a hole that puckers your rear end." But 2006 US Open Champion Geoff Ogilvy has a different view. “It’s a little bit of a lottery for the second- to-last hole of maybe the fifth most important tournament,” Ogilvy said. “[In 2008], Sergio hit one of the most quality iron shots anyone has seen to win a playoff. Sean O’Hair [in 2007] hit a shot only 4 yards further in the air and went from second place to 11th. For 70 holes, he was the second-best player and he finishes 11th. Is that right?” The island green again will be a big part of the Players Championship story when it gets under way this week. And one thing can be certain late on Sunday afternoon – the first contender to flinch will be sunk by the island of broken dreams. E "EVERY COURSE NEEDS A HOLE THAT PUCKERS YOUR REAR END."
GA Express 192
GA Express 194