Golf Test: Charley Hoffman

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Just how much do you have in common with the world’s top golfers? On the tee... four-time PGA Tour winner Charley Hoffman, who is leading after the first round of the 2017 Masters.

Have you ever hit five off the tee?
I can’t remember, but when you say ‘five off the tee’ I instantly think of Matt Every. I was playing with him in Phoenix a couple of years ago. He hit his tee shot in the water on 18 and some hecklers starting chanting ‘three off the tee’. Then he hit a second in the water and they changed it to ‘five off the tee’.

Have you ever found your ball in an unusual place?
I have landed in trash cans, bounced off people’s heads… if you play this game long enough, you are going to end up somewhere strange.

Have you ever broken a club in anger?
Yes, on average I probably break one a year. That said, the last one I can remember was a couple of years ago in Las Vegas. It was a wedge, I was in the trees, I hit a tree and then the club hit the tree...

Have you ever forgotten waterproofs and ended up getting soaked?
I can’t say I have, but this year in San Diego I got soaked because my waterproofs didn’t keep the water out as much as I would have liked!

Have you ever been disqualified?
Not on the Tour, but I can remember one event where I noticed that my score was one less than I thought I had shot. I went back to the scorer’s tent and disqualified myself.

Have you ever gone to high-five your playing partner and missed?
So many times! I think that happens every single time someone gets a hole-in-one. The rst high- ve never hits!

Have you ever had a hole-in-one?
Not on the PGA Tour, but I have had plenty during practice rounds. I guess the most memorable one I have made was during the stroke play section of the US Amateur Championship

Have you ever answered your phone during a round?
I haven’t answered it, but I have made a call or two. I remember one time I was going to miss the cut, so I called my wife to say, ‘let’s get packed up and get out of here!

Have you ever shouted ‘get in the hole’, only to see your ball come up 20 yards short or long?
Yes, but not because I actually thought I had a chance of making it. I tend to say things like that sarcastically when the shot I’ve played hasn’t panned out the way I wanted it to.

Have you ever hit a shank?
Oh yes, on a regular basis. They usually happen on chip shots or iron shots. When they do, you just have to focus on the next shot. It sounds difficult, but if you play golf long enough, you learn how to block it out.

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