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Golf Australia Express : GA Express 306
– particularly during the last four holes (the ‘Loop of Doom’) – are akin to what players tend to face week in, week out on the PGA Tour. One of the key advantages the Europeans will have at Le Golf National is the need to find the relatively narrow fairways from the tee and avoid the thick fescue rough – something we’ve seen regularly during French Opens and something that could ultimately curtail the ‘bombers’ on the American side. “It’s not a big driver’s golf course,” Bjorn said. “It’s not like you’re going to hit 14 drivers. There are going to be a lot of irons. That’s the way the golf course has always been.” This challenge could be further escalated depending on how the course is presented during the Cup and will be very different to what was found in 2016 at Hazeltine, which lacked rough and was labelled as “weak” and “soft” by Rose. The home support and educated crowds will also assist the Europeans – and so too will their vast knowledge of the course from past events. THE POTENTIAL PAIRINGS Since Bjorn and Jim Furyk announced their captain’s picks three weeks ago, the anticipation has, naturally, moved to the potential pairings for each team. The Americans boast the dominant pairing of Spieth and Reed, who have gone 4-1-2 (W-L-H) together after two Cups. But Rose and Stenson should be equally feared (if they reunite) with their record of 4-2-0. Good friends Koepka and Johnson were unbeaten when playing together in the Presidents Cup last year and could prove to be one of the most powerful partnerships in Paris. But Molinari and Fleetwood, who both possess such wonderful ball control, would match anyone stride for stride on a course they know so well. Woods will be flying after winning the Tour Championship last week. Who does Furyk pair him with? The 14-time major champion has played practice rounds with Mickelson throughout 2018. But Fuyrk isn’t likely to COVER STORY
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