AUGUSTA, Ga. (Reuters) – The course set-up for this week’s Masters is shaping as much as be quick and firm, a stark distinction from final November and one which three-times champion Phil Mickelson says will command respect.
Much is commonly manufactured from Augusta National’s quick, undulating greens, which throughout apply rounds this week have been a lot more durable and quicker than final yr when comfortable circumstances allowed gamers to fireplace at flagsticks with out a lot concern of consequence.
“I would say for the last decade, the greens here are in the top 25 percent of softest we play on tour, and the golf course’s only defence is the greens, right,” Mickelson mentioned on Tuesday in his pre-tournament information convention.
“So when the greens are firm, the precision, the course management, the angles, the leave where the ball is left, all of this stuff becomes incredibly important in your ability to play this course effectively.”
Mickelson mentioned the world’s greatest gamers are so exact of their potential to fly the golf ball the proper yardage with each membership that angles not matter when they’re taking part in on a course with receptive greens.
“It’s like having a military and then not giving them any weapons, right. It’s defenceless,” mentioned Mickelson.
“So with firm greens, that’s the defence. It’s not like we have — there’s no U.S. Open rough here. There’s no tight fairways. The defence is the greens, right.”
Mickelson, who arrives on the yr’s first main contemporary off a missed reduce finally week’s Texas Open, has no situation with a course taking part in to its potential and feels main championships ought to problem the sport’s prime gamers to strategise every shot.
“It’s really a hard job to set a golf course up right, because you’re always trying to find a line and not crossing it and it’s a tough thing to do,” mentioned Mickelson.
“But I think with firm greens, this golf course needs to be respected, and I think it’s been a long time since it’s had to be respected.”
(Reporting by Andrew Both; Writing Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Ken Ferris)