PGA Coach Shares 3 Key Areas for Success at Augusta National
A general view of the 18th green during a practice round prior to the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club on November 09, 2020 in Augusta, Georgia. Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images
The long wait is over and the golf world is rejoicing. After a 7-month delay, it’s finally Masters week.
The best male golfers in the world will take on the challenge of Augusta National Golf Club this week in search of the prestigious green jacket. The 93-player field is highlighted by defending champion Tiger Woods and features 26 players making their Masters debut, including 2020 PGA Champion Collin Morikawa.
Each player is sure to go into the major championship with their own gameplan, but we wanted to find out from an expert what the keys to success are.
PGA Coach Mike Bender has been by Zach Johnson’s side for 20 years and knows a thing or two about the course, helping Johnson claim the green jacket in 2007. Bender shared his top-3 keys to success for players playing Augusta National.
The Second Shot
- Augusta is primarily a second-shot golf course meaning that you need to hit your shots into the greens in the correct spots to give yourself a chance at making putts. There are so many severe slopes on the greens that depending on where the pin is located determines where you need to hit your approach shot. In many cases, you have to play the slopes to get the correct bounce and roll of the shot into the correct area. The key is you must have control over your iron game.
Avoid 3 Putting
- The slopes in combination with the speed of the greens make it mandatory to have great touch and feel in order to get your first putt close. Great vision and creativity are necessary to choose the proper lines for your putts. One of Tiger Woods' victories at Augusta came with zero 3 putts for the week, which is quite a feat.
- Mentally players need to be patient and stick to their game plans. It is easy to try and become more aggressive in order to make up shots or recover from mistakes made. This change in thinking usually leads to more bad scores as you cannot force it to happen at Augusta.
Mike Bender, PGA, Mike Bender Golf Academy
Mike Bender Golf Academy
Lake Mary, FL