Sky Sports' Masters Studio: The Zen Green Stage

Find out more about the high-tech Zen Green Stage putting and playing surface that the Sky Sports' studio team is using at this year's Masters

Find out more about the high-tech Zen Green Stage putting and playing surface that the Sky Sports' studio team is using at this year's Masters

Sky Sports' Masters Studio: The Zen Green Stage

Sky Sports is constantly innovating in its golf coverage. One of the tools the studio team is using for analysis and demonstration purposes at this year’s Masters is the Zen Green Stage.

Zen Green Stage, designed and built in Sheffield, is the world’s first “fully-adjustable connected playing surface for golf”.

Related: Best Black Friday Golf Deals

The high tech playing surface is wirelessly controlled and digitally adjustable. It can accurately replicate every putt within the ‘scoring zone’, including those testing double-breakers. There are plenty of those on Augusta’s fabled greens!.

The Sky studio team is using the Zen Green Stage to demonstrate Augusta's sloping greens and lies

Those watching the coverage will already have seen the Sky Sports studio version in action. Nick Dougherty and Paul McGinley were discussing and demonstrating the severe challenge that Augusta National’s ultra-slick and sloping surfaces will pose, even in a November Masters.

Sky’s Zen Green Stage has been embedded into the studio floor to create an excellent hitting and putting surface. The 2021 version features an interactive control system so programme directors can operate it remotely.

Not just for putts

It also comes with a variety of interchangeable Strike Mats. This means Sky’s presenting team will also be able to demonstrate a variety of full-swing shots in different course conditions.

Dougherty was clearly a tad disappointed to see McGinley hole a testing 12-footer with about three feet of break at the first time of asking!

The pair were highlighting just how much break even relatively short putts need when heavily sloping greens are running at Augusta pace.

Tiger mastering the slopes on Augusta's 9th green last year - one of the toughest on the course (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

“The Zen Green Stage is a great way of demonstrating the putting challenges which face professional golfers,” said Jason Wessely, executive producer at Sky Sports Golf.

“Our presenters can really show how speed and slope affect putting. It’s a brilliant TV tool.”

Those watching the early coverage may have noticed a graphic representation of the break on McGinley’s putt. This comes courtesy of “customised Zen Eye augmented-reality graphics!”

McGinley’s putt pretty much never left that line on its journey from putter to hole

If you fancy a Zen Green stage of your own, take a deep breath… the starting price is a mere £20,950!

Early Black Friday Deals spotted so far -

£44.99
Srixon Z-Star XV Golf Balls (One Dozen) £44.99 £34.95 with Golf Gear Direct
Get more than £10 off these premium Z-Star XV golf balls from Srixon.
£249
Rife RX5 Deluxe Rangefinder £249 £149 at American Golf
A rangefinder with excellent value, this Rife RX5 model provides highly accurate distance measurements whilst also maintaining a sleek design. It also caters for slope measurements and has a flag lock feature too, right now you can get one with £100 off.
$329.99
GolfBuddy Aim L10 Rangefinder $329.99 $219.99 at Rock Bottom Golf
The rangefinder just below the L10 Voice is the L10 which you can get with over $100 off right now. It has many of the same features as the model above but is lacking the voice feature.
$540
Stewart Golf R1-S Push Cart $540 $229.99 with Rock Bottom Golf
Stewart Golf has improved its R1 Push cart with this R1-S model. During testing we thought the folding mechanism worked excellently and the ease of use when walking and pushing it makes it one of the best golf carts around. Add a splash of colour and a huge saving and you have a winner.
Stewart Golf R1-S Push Cart Review

For all the latest golf news, check the Golf Monthly website and follow our social media channels @golfmonthlymagazine on Facebook and @golfmonthly on Twitter and Instagram

Jeremy Ellwood
Jeremy Ellwood

Jeremy Ellwood has worked in the golf industry since 1993 and for Golf Monthly since 2002 when he started out as equipment editor. He is now a freelance journalist writing mainly for Golf Monthly across the whole spectrum from courses and Rules to equipment and even instruction despite his own somewhat iffy swing (he knows how to do it, but just can't do it himself). He also edits The Golf Club Secretary Newsletter, has authored or co-authored three books and written for a number of national papers including The Telegraph and The Independent. He is a senior panelist for Golf Monthly's Top 100 UK & Ireland Course Rankings and has played all of the Top 100 plus 89 of the Next 100. He has played well over 900 courses worldwide in 35 countries, but put him on a links course anywhere and he will be blissfully content. On his first trip to Abu Dhabi a decade ago he foolishly asked Paul Casey what sort of a record he had around the course there. "Well, I've won it twice if that's what you mean!" came the reply...