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17th at St Andrews

Great holes in Golf: 17th at St Andrews (Old Course)

Architect Martin Ebert on this 455-yard par 4..
 

17th at St Andrews

As golf course architects, if anyone asked us to design a dogleg par 4 to play over a hotel, with a hidden and wellused pathway running alongside it to the shallowest of greens located next to a road with a wall nearby, we would tell them they were out of their mind!

However, as every golfer knows, that is what constitutes the Road Hole at St Andrews and is it not the best par 4 anyone could imagine?

Two of the finest shots struck into the heart of the green were those of Dr. David Marsh to clinch the Walker Cup for Great Britain and Ireland in 1971, only the second GB&I victory since 1922, and that of the incomparable Seve in his Open victory over Tom Watson in 1984.

The hole ideally calls for a fade from the tee and a slight draw into the green. However, the Road Hole Bunker awaits anything slightly pulled and, from there, any score can be made.

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Tom Irwin

Tom Irwin

Tom is a lifetime golfer, now over 30 years playing the game. 2023 marks 10 years in golf publishing and he is still holding down a + handicap at Alwoodley in Leeds. He has played over 600 golf courses, and has been a member of at least four including his first love Louth, in Lincolnshire. Tom likes unbranded clothing, natural fibres, and pencil bags. Seacroft in Lincolnshire is where it starts and ends.

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