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Golf Australia Express : GA Express 253
A LMOST every golf fan loves the closing stretch at Augusta. Heroes are moulded over that trio of holes, beginning with a par-3 that presents a good scoring opportunity for the bold, and a par-4 18th that can rank as the most difficult hole on the course, on its day. Ask pros and viewers alike to name their most iconic closing holes and the volatile offering at TPC Sawgrass’ Stadium Course – the site of the Players Championship – usually springs to mind, with its nerve-wracking par-3 17th island green and some of the most testing one-two punches to follow. But the finishing line-up of holes about to be unleashed on the field at the PGA Championship might just be the most diabolical of the lot. The call it ‘The Green Mile’, and it ain’t for the timid nor faint-hearted. Rarely considered among the great tournament finales due to it being a part of a standard PGA Tour event, the brutal climax at Quail Hollow Club comes sharply into focus this week, with a major championship on the line. While the rest of the course will receive its share of attention, having been recrafted at warp speed over the last 15 months in order to make it major-worthy, the potential pain awaiting the field over the closing stages will deservedly make us all sit up and take notice. THE JAB – Hole 16 THE ordeal begins at the 16th, which will be worth its weight in gold for the broadcasters. Measuring 506 yards, the par-4 will test the mettle of every player at least a couple of times this week, and is certain to bring more than a few campaigns undone. Players’ options are limited from the tee. As in, “you can’t hit left, right, or too far” limited. Doglegging to the right and skirted by water for much of the journey down the left, the fairway slopes towards the drink and includes a steep embankment, meaning anything in that direction is almost certainly destined for death.
GA Express 252
GA Express 254