A caddie's guide to Augusta's back nineMarch 9, 2017 Augusta
Dominic Bott has carried the bags for Monty, Bjorn, Casey and now Thorbjorn Olesen at the Masters.
10. Camilla- 425 yards, Par 4
The front nine doesn’t do that much for me. It’s obviously decent but when you stand on the 10th tee you think to yourself ‘now I’m at Augusta’.
You have seen this tee hundreds of times but when you stand on it you wonder if you are in the right place – you have no idea of how steep that hill is.
It’s a 3-wood hole because it is easier to shape it. Then it is a middle of the green shot. It is hard to get close to that front right pin so middle is good for all four pins.
Difficulty rating: 8/10
11. White Dogwood- 505 yards, Par 4
This is just a hard hole. The second shot has a more severe drop to the green than you think and it can be easier to make four by missing the green.
It doesn’t come across brilliantly on TV but it is a very strong hole. You aim right half of the green for a left pin and if you end up close you have pulled it.
Difficulty rating: 9/10
12. Golden Bell- 155 yards, Par 3
I have never seen Thomas (Bjorn) hit a ball as quickly – it was ‘where’s the wind, what’s
the shot, let’s hit it’. It was four 8-irons, one in the back trap and three to within 15 feet, with two birdies, so we did OK. You have a look at the three flags at 11, 12 and 13 and they are all going in different directions.
You just go with your feel and hit it. You see people everywhere, over the back or short, and it’s just an 8-iron. You’re not getting up and down from any bunker very often but you can hole putts on this green.
14. Chinese Fir- 440 yards, Par 4
We have all seen a few shots holed coming off the slopes. To be honest you can’t wait to get to 15 so this never stays in the memory that long. Obviously the green is pretty funky but most see it as a bit of respite from what has gone before and what comes after.
15. Firethorn- 530 yards, Par 5
Drive up the left and you are blocked out and laying it up. And it’s a tough lay up.
In 2012, Thomas lipped out with his pitch, Bo Van Pelt is on 16 and holes in one and Luke Donald then hits a driver for his third, from just off the green, and makes eagle.
Thomas asked: ‘How many times have you played that shot?’ It was the first time! Miss the green long and your short game will be found out. You don’t tend to make many fours from over the green. Unless you are putting, the third shot here will be tough.
16. Redbud- 170 yards, Par 3
I like the hole for what it is: you can make a hole-in-one or, just as easily, a bogey.
You don’t want to be throwing shots away early doors so when the pin is top right on the Friday you see a lot of shots in the middle of the green. If you are close you’ve pushed it. I like the pin up there, it makes it tough but not many go at it.
There is a lot of room to get it close to the Sunday pin. It will generally be a 7-iron, but you don’t see many putts holed from mid or long range though obviously a few have managed it over the years.
17. Nandina- 440 yards, par 4
If you get it up and down from over the green you have hit a phenomenal shot. If you do that under pressure, like Danny did last year, then you deserve to be Masters champion. It is another hole, a bit like 14, where you want to get to the next hole.
It will be around a 9-iron second but you don’t see a load of birdies. That’s probably down to the fact it might be the 35th or 71st hole of the opening major of the year. And it’s tough.
18. Holly- 465 yards, Par 4
An iconic hole, especially if you’re European. It’s a driver all day. You have to get the ball on the right level with the approach. Miss it left and you then have that chip where you have to use the slope. Any pin is hard with all the elevation.
This is a lot more uphill than you would imagine – you know you have had a good walk when you have reached the green and then you have to walk even more uphill to get to the clubhouse.