I was invited to play The West in July by a member and having been to Wentworth many times to watch the pro’s I was very excited about playing a course I had admired from afar but never had the opportunity to play until now.Standing on the first tee in front of the clubhouse really gets the juices flowing, and after a friendly chat with the starter I was ready to tee off on the infamous West!I won’t give a hole by hole description of the course as I am sure everyone is reasonably familiar with the layout. I can say that the overall conditioning of the course was excellent and the greens were true and pretty quick. I didn’t recognise all the changes made to the course, although the green on the Par 4 3rd is significantly different and in my opinion is far better than the 3 tiered option before. The bunkering around the course is severe in places and you can often find yourself in deep with only a hope and a prayer of getting out close to the hole.The 18th is clearly the most recognisable of all the changes and having not played the course before I didn’t know any different, all I will say is playing off 9 I had little chance of even attempting to reach the green in two. It is a narrow entrance with no real layup option other than short of the creek, the green is tiny in comparison to many of the other greens and it slopes towards the back bunkers. The height of the green in relation to the fairway also makes it incredibly difficult to stop the ball on the green unless you’re hitting a lofted club with plenty of check for your 3rd. I can understand why some of the pro’s questioned this particular change and they are indeed lowering the green within the next few weeks.The West is not overly long and there are plenty of opportunities to hit a short iron into some of the Par 4’s, I was surprised that the Par 5 12th was stroke index 18…..it is by no means a straight forward opportunity to reach in two and 150 yards or so from the tee there are two huge pine trees you have to navigate and surprise surprise I smashed my tee shot straight into one of them and was only ever laying up after that!As an overall experience I would recommend anyone to play The West if given the opportunity. I would not pay the full green fee of £360 as I don’t believe it is THAT good but paying a members guest fee was reasonable and I would certainly take up the offer of playing there again if presented.
Date: August 03, 2010