A guide to the third hole at Augusta National, including tips from two-time Masters champion and 37-time Masters competitor Bernhard Langer

Bernhard Langer Augusta National Course Guide: Hole 3

Augusta National Hole 3
Par 4
350 yards

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18

Despite its meagre yardage, the third hole is no pushover. Most players hit an iron for position, although a select few opt to hit driver to get as close to the green as possible. Many prefer a full shot into the green to control their spin, but precision is absolutely vital.

The green is extremely shallow and slopes severely from right to left, so anything hit too firm will fall off the back and anything too soft will spin back off the front. Even if you find the putting surface, a two-putt is by no means guaranteed.

It’s a hole that looks like a birdie opportunity on paper, but it’s so hard to make an up and down if players miss the green with their approaches – as its over-par cumulative stroke average proves.

Bernhard Langer hits his tee shot on the third hole during the first round of the 2009 Masters

Langer: “A short par four but the green is only about 11 yards deep on the left side. It is very easy for the second shot to spin down the slope in front of the green or for it to go through the back, so short-iron precision is critical.”

Best ever score: 2
Worst ever score: 8

Memorable moment: In 2011, Charl Schwartzel took the conservative option off the tee by hitting an iron. His second shot from the middle of the fairway pitched to the right of the traditional Sunday front-left pin position and rolled sideways into the hole. The South African became the only player in Masters history to eagle the 3rd en route to victory, and the only champion to birdie the final four holes during the final round.

Related: Rory McIlroy’s 2011 Final Round Nightmare

Worst moment: Even for an amateur, it’s rare to get in the way of your own shot. It might even border on the impossible, unless, that is, you have the bad luck of Jeff Maggert in 2003. On his way to a triple-bogey seven on hole 3, Maggert’s shot from a bunker caught the lip, rebounded off his chest and stayed in the sand. This freak event occurred with Maggert leading and ultimately opened the door for Mike Weir to claim the green jacket.