“When a birdie hole comes along, you’ve got to take advantage.”
PLAY IT YOUR WAY
A front hole location makes this par 4 play even shorter, inviting more players to have a go. With this green opening on the left, the ideal shot is a fade for righties. But don’t feel pressure to go against your natural shot shape. If you like to draw it, aim at the middle of the green and work it in. Most important is to hit your drive solid to give yourself a chance.
KEEP ON THE CORRECT SIDE OF THE SWALE
The bottom of the swale is six feet lower than the rest of the green. From there it’s a challenging two-putt to any cup above, but doable if you focus on distance control. If you lay up off the tee, you’ll have a short approach, so you should have enough control to hit the correct tier. The worst mistake is to be in a bunker that leaves the swale between you and the hole. Then it’s an exacting shot to get the next one close.
DON’T BACK DOWN
With the flag tucked in this back-right corner, time to lay up, right? Not so fast. This actually is a very gettable hole location. You can attempt to carry the bunker in front, or aim for the left half of the green and use the pitch of the swale to feed the ball all the way back. Finish almost anywhere on this green and you’re guaranteed an uphill putt to a cup in a flat area. Even a mediocre first putt from long range should get you to at least 15 feet— about the same length of a stellar wedge had you conservatively laid up.