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Augusta National is a course designed to induce the dramatic. Beginning with the par-5 15th hole, there is no better finishing stretch in golf.
The 15th hole is a classic risk/reward par-5. With a good drive, Tiger will be able to hit an iron into the green on his second shot, but with water both short and long, it will have to be a good one. An eagle is possible, but so is a double bogey.
The 16th hole is the scene of one of Tiger’s—and The Masters'—greatest shots. His chip-in birdie during the final round in 2005 propelled him to a comeback victory over Chris DiMarco in one of the greatest Masters in recent history. The green is multi-tiered, and an accurate tee shot is needed for a birdie to be possible at this tough par-3.
The 17th hole is one of the best par-4's at Augusta National. Famous for the Eisenhower Tree that stands left of the fairway, it is a hole that will see its share of birdies and bogeys. The approach shot is particularly difficult, as the green slopes away at every edge. Par is always a good score at No. 17.
The 18th hole is one that has undergone dramatic changes during Augusta’s “Tiger proofing”. Once a par-4 that required only a drive and a short iron for Tiger, the tee has been pushed back several yards.
This has made the drive on the dogleg right hole much more difficult and will require a long iron to reach the green. The traditional Sunday pin placement has always lent itself to closing birdies, but on most days, par is a great score here.
If Tiger can play these holes under par each day this week, he will be tough to beat.