17th hole, Stadium Course, TPC Sawgrass, Florida
Think Players Championship, think the island green 17th. This 137-yard flick on the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass looks innocent enough but the water befuddles tired minds and acts as magnet to balls.
During the 2015 Players, 45 balls found the drink — but there was a different kind of hazard in 1998 when a seagull picked up Steve Lowery’s ball and flew off before dropping it in the water.
“It tricks you into thinking it’s a real difficult hole when it’s just a short iron. But we’re human, so we think about the bad stuff,” Bubba Watson told reporters in 2011.
7th hole, Pebble Beach Golf Links, California
Intimate but intimidating, the 106-yard seventh at Pebble Beach is one of golf’s most iconic holes. This California classic plunges from an elevated tee down to a green perched above the crashing waves of Monterey Bay and the Pacific Ocean beyond.
“If I had only one more round to play, I would choose to play it at Pebble Beach,” says Jack Nicklaus.
“I’ve loved this course from the first time I saw it. It’s possibly the best in the world.”
Actor Bill Murray thought it a good idea to follow his ball with his club at the seventh in the Pebble Beach pro-am event in February.
New 9th hole, Trump Turnberry, Scotland
US President Donald Trump bought famous old Turnberry in 2014 and set about a major redevelopment of the revered Ailsa Course.
One of his most notable changes is a new par-three ninth, from the old ninth tee across the bay to a green nearer the foot of the lighthouse.
8th hole, Royal Troon, Scotland
The venue for the 2016 British Open features one of the most well-known holes in golf — the Postage Stamp, the 123-yard par-three eighth.
As the shortest hole in Open Championship golf, Troon’s signature hole is no pushover, with cavernous bunkers protecting a small green.
“You can run up a big score in a hurry there if you’re not careful,” says former European Tour star and Troon local Colin Montgomerie.
“You’ve got to be very, very careful and treat that little hole with an awful lot of respect.”
16th hole, Port Royal, Bermuda
Paradise or purgatory? Port Royal is one of Bermuda’s best tracks and its signature hole is the sea-hugging 16th across the cliffs.
The bewitching backdrop of azure Atlantic waters could be a distraction, though. “The interesting thing on that hole is you don’t feel the breeze on the tee box that much,” said English pro Justin Rose when the PGA Grand Slam of Golf was held here in 2013.
“You just never allow for enough when the wind is coming from the right.”
12th hole, Augusta National, Georgia
Oh, Jordan. An instant after this picture was snapped, Spieth’s dream of back-to-back Masters drowned in Rae’s Creek in April 2016.
Augusta’s treacherous 12th hole at the heart of Amen Corner added a new layer of notoriety when the defending champion — leading by five with nine holes to play — ran up a quadruple-bogey seven with two shots in the water.
Tom Weiskopf put five in the water en route to a 13 at the 1980 Masters.
Extreme 19th hole, Entabeni, South Africa
Fear of heights? You’ll want to give this one a miss, then — you’ll need a helicopter to get to the tee.
The Extreme 19th begins on the top of Hanglip Mountain and plunges 400m down — and 395 yards horizontally — to a green in the shape of Africa.
It is an add-on to the 18-hole Signature Course within the Entabeni Safari Conservancy in South Africa, where each hole was designed by a leading professional player, including Padraig Harrington, Sergio Garcia and Montgomerie.
16th hole, Cypress Point, California
This ultra-exclusive members-only course on California’s Monterey Peninsula has may splendid holes but the 16th — from the tee on a rocky bluff to the left of the clubhouse (above) across the bay to a promontory green — is the one that keeps tongues wagging long after a round.
“I do not expect anyone will ever have the opportunity of constructing another course like Cypress Point as I do not suppose anywhere in the world is there such a glorious combination of rocky coast, sand dunes, pine woods and cypress trees,” said designer Alister MacKenzie, who also crafted Augusta National, in 1932.
4th hole, Championship course, Royal County Down, Northern Ireland
Royal County Down in Northern Ireland was voted the world’s best course for 2016-17 by Golf Digest — surpassing icons such as Augusta National and St Andrews — and the 228-yard par-three fourth hole is one of its jewels.
7th hole, Kauri Cliffs, New Zealand
As settings go Kauri Cliffs stands comparison with the best.
This Kiwi classic is spread across an old sheep ranch high above the Pacific Ocean in New Zealand’s Northland.
The short seventh clings to the cliffs and plays a knuckle-whitening 220 yards across a canyon towards a treacherous green with the Cavalli Islands beyond.
10th hole, Royal Dornoch, Scotland
Ranked 5th in Golf Digest’s 100 Greatest Courses, Royal Dornoch in the far north east of Scotland is a veritable links classic.
The second is often hailed as one of the great par threes but for sheer spectacle the 142-yard 10th hugging the white sand beaches of the Dornoch Firth might edge it.
Watson is often quoted as saying that playing at Royal Dornoch “was the most fun I’ve ever had on a golf course.”
“I never tire of this truly fabulous course,” tweeted veteran golf photographer David Cannon of Getty Images.
16th hole, TPC Scottsdale, Arizona
A par three with a twist. No stupendous views, or carries across chasms — just grandstands full of baying fans drinking, hooting and hollering. If you get nervous playing in front of your pals, imagine teeing off on the 16th at TPC Scottsdale during the week of the Pheonix Open, the rowdiest week on the PGA Tour. Where golf meets gladiators.
Arizona hosts craziest week on golfing calendar 09:16
“I love this event, and I definitely, like you said, embrace the crowd, the atmosphere,” Rickie Fowler told reporters at the 2016 Phoenix Open.
“You can definitely use it to your advantage if you’re playing well and kind of feed off the crowd’s energy.”
By Rob Hodgetts
Updated 1222 GMT (2022 HKT) May 8, 2018
Justin Thomas was already No. 1 in the FedExCup when he got to TPC Sawgrass for THE PLAYERS Championship.
Now he’s No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking, too.
“I don’t care how I get it, if I get it,” Thomas said, “but I would much rather shoot 10 under on the weekend and earn it as opposed to missing the cut and have D.J. not play well.”
After making the cut on the number at 1-under and rebounding with a third-round 68, Thomas shot a final-round 66 at overcast TPC Sawgrass to finish 11-under (T11). It was out of his hands at that point, and Johnson spun his wheels during a final-round 72 to finish T17, opening the door for the change at the top.
“It means a lot,” Thomas said, “but it’s something I want to have for a long time, it’s not something I just want to have once.”
Thomas has won seven times on the PGA TOUR, including twice this season, since the start of the 2017 season. He also won the FedExCup last year. He came into this PLAYERS on the heels of a T21 at the Wells Fargo Championship and a missed cut with partner Bud Cauley at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans.
Although he admitted he got sidetracked earlier this season by the prospect of potentially reaching No. 1, Thomas was able to put it out of his mind at TPC Sawgrass on Sunday. He made six birdies, an eagle and a double-bogey, missing birdie chances from close range on 17 and 18.
He said he was headed home with his family to relax and play pool, part of a much-needed rest after three straight weeks on the road.
“I love this golf course,” he said. “I always have; I’ve always said that. There’s something about it. It’s so exciting to go play because I truly feel like you can shoot 9-, 10-, 11-under, you really can, just because of the length of the golf course and if you’re driving it well and how good the greens are.”
Tom Lehman, who was at THE PLAYERS in a social capacity before driving to the Regions Tradition, next week’s stop on the PGA TOUR Champions in Birmingham, Alabama, was No. 1 for one week in 1997.
“It’s something that’s always next to your name,” Lehman said. “No one can take it away, and there aren’t many people who have gotten there.”
Thomas, who was the college Player of the Year in his freshman year in Alabama, is the 21st person to reach No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking. He wouldn’t say whether or not the achievement appeared on his goals list, which he keeps on his phone.
“It’s important,” he said, “but like I said, it’s not something where it’s like I just want to do it once. I want to do it for a really, really long time.”
22 Woodhall Spa (Hotchkin) Down 4
23 Royal Porthcawl Down 1
24 St George’s Hill (Red & Blue) No Move
25 Ganton Down 6
26 North Berwick Up 2
27 Portmarnock (Red & Blue) Down 2
28 Lahinch (Old) Down 2
29 Walton Heath (Old) Down 2
30 Hillside No Move
31 Burnham & Berrow (Championship) Up 2
32 Trump International Golf Links & Hotel, Ireland (pictured below) No Move
33 Nairn (Championship) Up 1
34 Hankley Common Up 7
35 Old Head Up 4
36 St Enodoc (Church) No Move
37 Gleneagles (King’s) Up 3
38 Swinley Forest No Move
39 Formby Down 2
40 Notts Up 8
41 Saunton (East) Down 6
42 The Berkshire (Red) Up 1
43 Prestwick Up 3
44 Royal St David’s No Move
45 Rosapenna (Sandy Hills) No Move
46 Silloth On Solway Up 5
47 Royal West Norfolk (pictured below) No Move
48 Alwoodley Up 4
49 Tralee Up 4
50 Walton Heath (New) Down 1
51 West Sussex Up 4
52 Western Gailes Up 2
53 Machrihanish Down 3
54 Rye (Old) Up 4
55 County Louth Up 4
56 Royal Cinque Ports No Move
57 The Berkshire (Blue) No Move
58 Blairgowrie (Rosemount) Up 4
59 Hunstanton Up 5
60 Moortown (pictured below) No Move
61 Saunton (West) No Move
62 Gleneagles (Queen’s) Up 1
63 Gullane (No.1) Up 5
64 Worplesdon Up 2
65 St Andrews (New) Up 2
66 Southport & Ainsdale Up 3
67 Liphook Up 3
68 Aberdovey Down 3
69 Ballyliffin (Glashedy) Up 4
70 Aldeburgh (Championship) Up 1
71 Woburn (Marquess’) (pictured below) Up 3
72 The Island Up 3
73 Druids Glen Up 3
74 Royal North Devon Down 2
75 Trevose (Championship) Up 2
76 Cruden Bay (Championship) Up 13
77 Mount Juliet Up 5
78 West Lancashire Up 1
79 West Hill Up 6
80 Lough Erne Down 2
81 The Belfry (Brabazon) Down 1
82 Parkstone Up 9
83 The Grove Up 4
84 Sherwood Forest Up 8
85 St Andrews (Castle) (pictured below) Up 5
86 Woking Up 9
87 County Sligo (Championship) Up 6
88 K Club (Palmer Ryder Cup) Down 4
89 Woburn (Duchess’) Up 5
90 Ferndown (Old) New Entry
91 Woburn (Duke’s) Up 6
92 Portmarnock Links Up 6
93 Carne (Hackett) Up 6
94 Enniscrone (The Dunes) New Entry
95 Close House (Lee Westwood Colt) Up 5
96 Broadstone New Entry
97 Pennard New Entry
98 Ladybank Down 2
99 Tandridge New Entry
Saint Patrick himself would have to deal with pinching on his feast day. His color was “Saint Patrick’s blue,” a light shade. The color green only became associated with the big day after it was linked to the Irish independence movement in the late 18th century.
Although he made his mark by introducing Christianity to Ireland in the year 432, Patrick wasn’t Irish himself. He was born to Roman parents in Scotland or Wales in the late fourth century.
As you might expect, Saint Patrick’s Day is a huge deal in his old stomping grounds. It’s a national holiday in both Ireland and Northern Ireland.
New York City’s Saint Patrick’s Day Parade is one of the world’s largest parades. Since 1762, 250,000 marchers have traipsed up Fifth Avenue on foot – the parade still doesn’t allow floats, cars, or other modern trappings.
New York may have more manpower, but Chicago has a spectacle all its own. The city has been celebrating Saint Patrick by dumping green dye into the Chicago River since 1962. It takes 40 tons of dye to get the river to a suitably festive shade!
For most of the 20th century, Saint Patrick’s Day was considered a strictly religious holiday in Ireland, which meant that the nation’s pubs were closed for business on March 17. (The one exception went to beer vendors at the big national dog show, which was always held on Saint Patrick’s Day.) In 1970, the day was converted to a national holiday, and the stout resumed flowing.
Not every city goes all-out in its celebratory efforts. From 1999 to 2007, the Irish village of Dripsey proudly touted that it hosted the Shortest Saint Patrick’s Day Parade in the World. The route ran for 26 yards between two pubs. Today, Hot Springs, Arkansas claims the title for brevity – its brief parade runs for 98 feet.
How did the shamrock become associated with Saint Patrick? According to Irish legend, the saint used the three-leafed plant as a metaphor for the Holy Trinity when he was first introducing Christianity to Ireland.
In Irish lore, Saint Patrick gets credit for driving all the snakes out of Ireland. Modern scientists suggest that the job might not have been too hard – according to the fossil record, Ireland has never been home to any snakes. Through the Ice Age, Ireland was too cold to host any reptiles, and the surrounding seas have staved off serpentine invaders ever since. Modern scholars think the “snakes” Saint Patrick drove away were likely metaphorical.
Corned beef and cabbage, a traditional Saint Patrick’s Day staple, doesn’t have anything to do with the grain corn. Instead, it’s a nod to the large grains of salt that were historically used to cure meats, which were also known as “corns.”
All of the Saint Patrick’s Day revelry around the globe is great news for brewers. A 2012 estimate pegged the total amount spent on beer for Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations at $245 million. And that’s before tips to pubs’ bartenders.
According to Irish legend, Saint Patrick wasn’t originally called Patrick. His birth name was Maewyn Succat, but he changed his name to Patricius after becoming a priest.
Don’t be fooled by any holiday decorations showing lady leprechauns. In traditional Irish folk tales, there are no female leprechauns, only nattily attired little guys.
Another little-known fact from Irish lore: Leprechauns earned that gold they’re guarding. According to legend, leprechauns spend their days making and mending shoes. It’s hard work, so you can’t blame them for being territorial about their pots of gold.
You can’t attend a Saint Patrick’s Day event without hearing a cry of “Erin go Bragh.” What’s the phrase mean? It’s a corruption of the Irish Éirinn go Brách, which means roughly “Ireland Forever.”
The patron saint of Ireland was actually born in Scotland in the late 4th century. When he was a teenager, Palladius (his real name) was kidnapped and sold into slavery in Ireland. Six years later, he escaped and went back to Scotland, where he joined a monastery. As an adult, Palladius returned to Ireland as a missionary, where he lived for 40 years, dying in A.D. 461.
Although green is the color most associated with Ireland (it is the “Emerald Isle” after all), it’s not St. Patrick’s color. Members of the Order of St. Patrick actually used blue as their symbolic color. The shade: St. Patrick’s blue.
The truth lies right there in the name: Saint Patrick’s Day. It’s a feast day for a Catholic saint, best known for converting native Irish to Christianity. Until the 1700s, it was a day in the Catholic calendar in observance of a saint important to and popular in Ireland… and not much anywhere else. And even in Ireland, Catholics honored St. Patrick with prayer and quiet reflection. St. Patrick’s Day, as we know it today, started in America in the late 19th and early 20th century, when the large numbers of newly arrived Irish immigrants began using the day as a way to celebrate their Irish heritage.
What is the History of Saint Patrick’s Day: Saint Patrick’s Day, or the Feast of Saint Patrick (Irish: Lá Fhéile Pádraig, “the Day of the Festival of Patrick”), is a cultural and religious celebration held on 17 March, the traditional death date of Saint Patrick ( c. AD 385–461), the foremost patron saint of Ireland.
Who was St Patrick and why do we celebrate? St Patrick’s Day is a global celebration of Irish culture on or around March 17. It particularly remembers St Patrick, one of Ireland’s patron saints, who ministered Christianity in Ireland during the fifth century.
What is St Patrick’s famous for? Saint Patrick is known as the patron saint of Ireland. Although he was not born Irish, he has become an important part of the Irish heritage, mostly through his service across Ireland in the 5th century.
ORLANDO, Fla. – A wild-card pick by captain Fred Couples in the 2011 Presidents Cup, Tiger Woods validated his inclusion on the U.S. team by capturing the clinching point at Royal Melbourne Golf Club in Australia.
He could well find himself with an opportunity to reprise that moment when the Presidents Cup returns to Royal Melbourne next December. If he doesn’t qualify for the American squad on points, he’d have to engage in a serious conversation with the captain being one of four picks. And he’d prefer to avoid that.
“I would like to get to a point where I’m playing well enough where I could make the team on points,” Woods said. “I wouldn’t want to have the conversation and go, ‘Self.’ I don’t really want to have that conversation, so let’s just see how it progresses.”
That intriguing scenario – and one he could envision only in his most optimistic aspirations – could present itself to the former World No. 1 player after he and Ernie Els were introduced officially Tuesday at Bay Hill Club as the Presidents Cup captains for the 13th edition of the biennial matches.
The youngest captain in the event’s history, Woods, 42, subtly lobbied PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan for the position after America swept to its 10th win in October at Liberty National Golf Club. That was at a time when he was uncertain of his competitive future after undergoing spinal fusion surgery last February.
But Woods’ comeback, which continues this week at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, has gone exceedingly well, capped thus far by his tie for second place last week at the Valspar Championship in nearby Palm Harbor, Fla. While the 2019 Presidents Cup isn’t until Dec. 12-15, Woods already has to address the prospect of becoming only the second playing captain after Hale Irwin pulled double duty in the inaugural edition in 1994.
He knew it was possible, and he addressed it with Monahan when he began talking to the commissioner about the role after serving as an assistant captain to Davis Love III in the 2016 Ryder Cup and to Steve Stricker in last year’s Presidents Cup. He also will serve as an assistant captain to Jim Furyk in the Ryder Cup this fall in Paris.
“It was just a natural progression to one day become captain,” said Woods, the 14-time major champion, who will be just a few weeks shy of 44 when the matches conclude in Australia.
“Hale did it in the first year. And I know it was the first year, the inaugural event, but he still did it. So, I just wondered if that was an opportunity and he [Monahan] said that there’s nothing in the bylaws that say that I can’t do it,” said Woods, who has competed in eight Presidents Cups for the U.S. and scored the clinching point in 2009, ’11 and ’13. “It’s going to be dependent on myself, my assistants and the players, if I happen to get to that point. That’s a bridge that’s a long way away from now to be crossing, but if it does come to that point, it won’t just be just my decision, it will be a collaborative effort, what is best for the team.”
Irwin was ranked 28th in the world and qualified automatically for the U.S. team by finishing seventh in the points standings, when he played for the U.S. He won two of his three matches at Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in Virginia, including a 1-up singles victory over Robert Allenby of Australia. Paul Azinger handled the captain’s duties when Irwin played.
It will be more difficult for Woods to qualify on points. A change to the qualifying process was announced Tuesday with an increase in captain’s picks, from two to four, for each team in filling out the 12-man squads. Qualifying will end after the Tour Championship scheduled for early September, 2019, with automatic berths going to the top eight Americans on the points list and the top eight International players in the world rankings.
While Woods is a surprise selection – he didn’t even consider himself a candidate until nudged by Love, Stricker and others – Els was a logical successor to Nick Price as the International Team captain after serving as an assistant last year. A four-time major champion, Els, 48, has competed eight times in the event, but his only winning experience came in the 1998 matches at Royal Melbourne.
The Big Easy doesn’t believe he’ll find himself in the same quandary as Woods. “No, I think I’m going to be captaining,” he said flatly.
The selection of Woods and Els brings a third dynamic pairing of captains to the Presidents Cup after Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player of South Africa each served four times and Fred Couples and Greg Norman of Australia squared off twice. But Woods and Els bring a new dimension of relative youth and competitiveness.
“I think it’s a huge impact,” Monahan said of the pair. “And I think it’s a huge impact because for two reasons, one, they’re going to bring the world at large to the Presidents Cup as they have done every time that they’re competing on a global stage. And in doing so they’re likely going to be bringing forward future stars.”
Of course, Woods and Els share a special Presidents Cup bond. When the 2003 competition in Fancourt, South Africa, ended in a tie, Nicklaus selected Woods and Player picked Els to compete in a sudden-death playoff. The pair went a nerve-fraying three holes, the last in near darkness, before Nicklaus and Player decided to end the playoff and share the cup rather than have the duel continue the next morning.
“We were talking about that then and there that night for a very long period of time with certain libations,” Woods said, “and we couldn’t believe the amount of pressure we felt. We both had won major championships, but nothing felt like that.”
Respect the rules of the golf course you are playing.
Be aware of other golfers on the course.
Leave the course in the same condition that you found it, if not in better.
Play at a reasonable pace.
Be quiet while someone is preparing to hit and hitting their shot.
Play in the order you discuss with your group.
Putt in the appropriate order.
Make sure you are playing the correct ball.
Make sure the flag is all the way in the hole before leaving the green.
Walk across the line of another player’s putt on the green.
Hold up other players.
Throw your clubs.
Walk off the green before everybody has finished putting.
Leave your shadow over someone’s ball when they are hitting.
Use your cell phone during the round.
Stand behind someone while they are hitting.
Spend too much time looking for a lost ball.
Show up late.
Drive the golf cart wildly.
Congrats to Wiele for being invited to play in the Pro-Am of this event. Make us proud Wiele.
8th – 11th February 2018
Prize Fund: R1 500 000
Previous Winner: Erik van Rooyen