Golf | Woods: Augusta National used to be a doddle

Cape Town – Tiger Woods insists it used to be pretty easy to win the Masters before Augusta was transformed by a series of changes.

Since 2002, Augusta National has undergone extensive alterations, the
most notable being the lengthening of a number of holes, the narrowing
of several fairways and the addition of trees and bunkers around the

The latest change set to greet returning players in 2019 is the
lengthening of the par-4 fifth hole by 40 yards, while the purchasing of
extra land surrounding the course suggests more changes could be in the
offing in the near future.

The motive behind most of the changes was making Augusta a more
challenging test for modern players, and as far as Woods is concerned,
the alterations have succeeded in their aim.

In fact, Woods reckons playing Augusta used to be downright easy for
him when he first arrived, which may explain his runaway 12-shot victory
there as a 21-year-old back in 1997.

Woods also captured further Masters wins in 2001, 2002 and 2005.

“When I first went there, there were no bunkers,” Woods said, according to Yahoo Sports.

“I drove it into the crosswalk on one. I hit a nine-iron into two.
Drove it on the green on three. Had a sandwedge into five. Sandwedge
into seven. Eight I had a four-iron.

“Nine was a sandwedge. Eleven was a wedge. Thirteen was a three-wood and eight-iron. Fourteen was a three-wood and a sandwedge.

“Fifteen was a driver and eight-iron, driver-pitching wedge
sometimes. Seventeen was a driver sandwedge and 18 was a

“It really wasn’t that hard.”

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