Five key holes at Le Golf National

NO. 3: PAR 5, 558 YARDS

The first par five on the par-71 layout comes early, but does feature a dangerous tee shot, especially for players who take a driver hoping to reach the green in two. If the water hazard down the right is avoided and the fairway is found, there could be an eagle chance with an approach shot towards a green guarded by bunkers at the front and over the back. Pars are unlikely to be enough to win this hole.

NO. 6: PAR 4, 380 YARDS

While far from the most visually stunning of holes at Le Golf National, there could be plenty of birdies and drama if the tees are moved forward, making it reachable for most top players. American Phil Mickelson found the putting surface with his tee shot in Tuesday's practice, but a miss to the right is not an option, with out of bounds lurking.

NO. 11: PAR 3, 178 YARDS

A magnificent par three, the 11th is treacherous, with the green perched on top of a hill above a lake. When the grass on the bank is cut fine, many balls would come up just short of the green and roll back into the water. Certain pin positions will be accessible, but a strong tee shot to the heart of the green would definitely pile the pressure on opponents.

NO. 16: PAR 3, 177 YARDS

The 16th could see the end of many matches. For most, it does not take much more than a nine-iron, but water is waiting on the right and a large bunker to the left could also prove tricky. This could be the place to really put the squeeze on opponents with a tee shot inside 10 feet for the climax of a match.

NO. 18: PAR 4, 471 YARDS

Perhaps the hardest hole is saved until last, with a daunting tee shot. Anything left will find water, but a bailout to the right is not an option as thick rough will leave the players with a lay-up towards the lake, which bends in front of the green.

Spaniards Sergio Garcia and Jon Rahm both reached the 18th in July's French Open, needing birdies to force a play-off, only to find water ending their chances of winning the tournament.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 28, 2018, with the headline 'Five key holes at Le Golf National'. Subscribe