We Played the new holes

Golf Asia (Malaysia) - - NORTHERN IRELAND -

When we trav­elled to Co Antrim in April to play the course with Martin Ebert, it in­cluded the priv­i­lege of play­ing the two new holes. Only Dar­ren Clarke beat us to it... GMac played them the day af­ter!

The 7th is a par 5 of im­mense vis­ual ap­peal, snaking be­tween big dunes, es­pe­cially on the right. It be­gins on an el­e­vated tee and stretches to 572 yards off the tips; into the wind it will be a beast. Even on calmer days, it will re­quire two fine blows to get up to a slightly el­e­vated green.

Next, you turn 180° and play a risk-re­ward par 4, where the brave will chew off as much of the right-to-left dog-leg as they dare. We played safe down the right and re­alised why many will be courageous, for the an­gle of ap­proach to the perched green is vastly su­pe­rior from the ‘brave’ left side. A sec­ond bunker, af­ter con­sult­ing with Clarke, went in to give Rory and co some­thing to think about.

They are two holes that “look” fresh at the mo­ment, but when they set­tle in with noth­ing more than the nat­u­ral cy­cle of sea­sonal growth, both will fit in beau­ti­fully.

First play Our man drives down the new 8th.

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