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2019 Presidents Cup: Course Guide

Royal Melbourne Golf Club in Australia will host the 2019 Presidents Cup with the Composite Course providing the battle ground for the United States and International teams to go head-to-head.

In what will be 13th Presidents Cup, Tiger Woods will captain the USA team against the Ernie Els-captained Internationals with Royal Melbourne hosting the event between December 12-15.

The Royal Melbourne Golf Club is no stranger to the Presidents Cup having hosted two previous editions, the first outside of America in 1998 when the Internationals scored a 20.5-11.5 victory and again in 2011 when the United States won 19-15.

Royal Melbourne Golf Club

Royal Melbourne is rated as one of the world’s top-ten golf courses and has hosted some of the sport’s biggest events including the Australian Open 16 times and the Women’s Australian Open during a rich history dating back to 1891.

Located on the edge of Melbourne, there are two 18-hole tracks at Royal Melbourne—the West Course and East Course—and they rank as Australia’s best and sixth best respectively.

The West Course was designed by Alister MacKenzie on Melbourne’s sandbelt and is a par-72 test measuring more than 6,600 yards. It is was built in 1926 under the watch of Alex Russell, who then designed the East Course himself in 1932.

The West Course was lengthened and the grass changed ahead of the 2011 edition of the tournament to help make the test tougher and protect par.

For the 2019 Presidents Cup, the Composite Course made up of holes from both the West and East Courses will be used, as was the case when it was put together for the first time back in 1959 when Royal Melbourne hosted the World Cup.

In total, the Presidents Cup will be played on 12 West Course holes and six from the East Course routing, the 18 holes combining for a par-71 test measuring 7,032 yards.

Royal Melbourne Golf Club Course Guide

The Composite Course starts with the third hole of the West Course and the difficulty in the 354-yard par-4 is the green, which slopes from front to back.

Hole 2 (West Course 4th) is a dog leg 507-yard par-5 where birdies will be the order of the day despite a blind tee shot, while Hole 3 (West Course 5th) is a lovely 176-yard par-3 played across a valley.

Hole 4 (West Course 6th) is an impressive 428-yard par-4 with the green tricky on this tough dog leg. Hole 5 (West Course 7th) is a short par-3 measuring just 148 yards, but one which has plenty of bite, and Hole 6 (West Course 10th) is a real risk-and-reward test with the par-4 just 312-yards in length.

The front nine concludes with a trio of two shotters with Hole 7 (West Course 11th) a tough 455-yard par 4, Hole 8 (West Course 12th) played as a 476-yard par-4 and Hole 9 (West Course 17th) a 439-yard test with an accurate tee shot required.

The back nine gets underway with Hole 10 (West Course 18th) with a blind tee shot on the 433-yard par-4 with the brave line hugging the right hand side of the fairway. A short par-4 follows for Hole 11 (East Course 1st) with birdies likely at the 333-yarder.

Hole 12 (East Course 2nd) has a very narrow fairway and accuracy is required off the tee on the 440-yard par-4, while a conservative strategy will be favoured on the 383-yard par 4 Hole 13 (East Course 3rd) where finding the fairway is key to leaving an ideal approach.

Sand surrounds Hole 14 (East Course 16th), a 166-yard par-3 where club selection is key, and it is followed by the longest test in Hole 15 (East Course 17th), a par-5 measuring 572 yards.

The East Course 18th provides Hole 16 of the Composite Course with nothing of note to strike fear on the 432-yard par-4. It’s back to the West Course and the 1st, which is played as Hole 17 and the 429-yard should provide birdie opportunities at the business end of matches.

The Composite Course finishes with Hole 18, the par-5 2nd on the West Course and a real risk-and-reward head scratcher to end on. At just 491 yards, the decision facing the United States and International start is whether to take on the green in two or not. It could be victory or disaster.

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