Hole Eight: 187 metres – Pond Green
Another risk-reward par four with a double fairway to a green partially surrounded by a pond (in front, left and behind) and with a water hazard crossing the right fairway 160 metres from the tee.
Most of the hole is invisible from the tee and the intimidation factor is increased by the narrowness of the avenue from the tee to the fairway. Once that has been negotiated, out of bounds is right and one-metre high rough left. The strategic options are to lay-up short of the cross hazard (the fairway quickly narrows from 142 metres), attempt to hit over it near to the right edge of the green (carry 181 metres), or to play down the left fairway and pitch over the pond. The latter approach is partially obstructed by trees. The terraced green slopes toward the pond so approaches from the right-side fairway must be precise. A shot finishing on the wrong terrace will result in a very testing approach putt. This minute par four hole takes no prisoners, it is rarely parred and the record high score (by a 7 handicapper) is a thirteen.
Normal logic dictates that this 187 metre hole should be a par three. Really? - in six years this green has been hit in regulation twice….