Now This is What I'm Talking About!
With the PGA Tour stop at the Northern Trust Open this week, and amid the group of new drama and rumors circulating around Tiger, Phil, Scott and grooves, perhaps golf fans everywhere will have some excitement to look forward to during the week: the 10th hole at Riviera.
Measuring a mere 315-yards in length (Par 4), this tough little test will be incredibly tempting for most players in the field to go for off the tee, prompting a different type of drama and excitement. Many players are already looking forward to playing the 10th, including Brandt Snedeker:
"It's just a great, short, strategic hole," Brandt Snedeker said. "We don't see very many like that anymore. You can see a guy easily walk off with bogey one day and feel like he actually stole one because he should have had double. And you can easily walk off with an eagle one day and say, 'Yeah, that's the way you're supposed to play that hole.' You see very few holes that play that dramatically different over the course of a week."
While many players will probably opt to hit a long or mid-iron safely onto the fairway, don't be surprised if the vast majority take a crack at the green at least once this week. Snedeker continues:
"We don't play many par-4s that everybody can drive," Snedeker said. "When
I say everybody, I mean everybody. I'm on the bottom half of the list in driving
distance, and I can still get there. It's one of those holes where it's a birdie hole, you think it's a birdie hole, but you can easily make a bogey just as quickly as you can make a birdie.
"If you lay it up, it's almost a tougher wedge shot than it is hitting a driver off the tee. That's what's so hard about that hole. That's why you see very few guys lay up, because it's such a difficult second shot if you do lay up."
Personally, this is the type of thing I have been hoping the PGA Tour would brace and increase in number for most tournaments. In what is becoming a new age of disagreement regarding golf technology and rule changes, I am a firm believer that tempting, not scaring, the players will add to the excitement and allure of the PGA Tour. Make the rough as long and greens as fast as you want; there just isn't anything like seeing an eagle putt on a par 4.