Little over a month after his appearance in a Glenmorangie commercial had me wincing the way you do when your kid goes rogue in the school Nativity play, I am tensing up once more, as I read of the Telegraph's visit to Faldo's new course in Laguna Lang Co in Vietnam.
“The first thing that strikes me is how easy it is,” Faldo replies, to a chorus of groans from an audience of golfers who spent the previous afternoon sweating and swearing their way around his course, hitting balls into paddy fields and palm trees, watching respectable chips and putts roll back down the slope past their feet."All right, he was commenting on the access now available to this once forbidding jungle area but come on; that last bit doesn't bode well. If your "respectable" efforts are rejected so forcefully, what kind of short-game effort is the architect looking for, exactly?
"The man himself is no mere figurehead. 'I’ve been interested in design since I redrew my home course at Welwyn on a piece of paper to show the committee how they could improve it,' Faldo says. At Lang Co he left his team in no doubt about what he wanted: green here, tee there, don’t touch those rocks. That fairway is too wide: add bunkers for visual impact."Now there are no quotation marks around those last 10 words, so it could be that the author is merely paraphrasing what he believed Sir Nick said. If they are intended to be a straight quote, however, then I must confess that my spirits drop somewhat, at the prospect that Sir Nick Faldo, golf architect, believes that bunkers should be installed for something other than strategic purposes and that he apparently shies away from fairways that are too wide. Presumably because if there's one thing golf needs more of right now, it's fairways pinched tighter than Kate Moss' waist.
As to this next bit, words momentarily failed me.
"Faldo enjoys the role of landscape artist, and as a signature quirk insisted on three “chocolate drop” mounds by the green at the short fifth, to remind us of his three Opens and three Masters titles. In time they may look a little less quirky."I could argue that six mounds would surely be more logical but to do so, I fear I, would make me equally guilty of embracing the madness. You get three green jackets, three claret jugs and enough photos to fill the Tate Modern and you are seriously telling me that your soul can't rest until you've moulded three hummocks in some corner of Vietnam??!!
As I have said more than once to my older son, Sir Nick; I love you to bits but I'm worried about you...
Pic of the Day - Turnberry, Scotland