3:33 | News
Tour Confidential: Is the 17th at Sawgrass Overrated or Underrated?
By Josh Berhow
Monday, May 07, 2018

The Players Championship means the arrival of two things: the unofficial fifth major of the PGA Tour season (depending on whom you ask) and one of the most hyped and exciting holes on Tour in the par-3 17th.

Ever since the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass began hosting the Players in 1982, the world has received a front-row view of just how diabolical and maddening the island green can be for professional golfers.

Here is everything you need to know about one of golf's most fascinating and iconic holes: the Stadium Course's 137-yard 17th.


The highest score ever recorded on the treacherous par-3 17th at TPC Sawgrass during the Players Championship. This unfortunate honor was awarded to Bob Tway in 2005. Tway, who was seven under and four shots off the lead when he reached the 17th during his third round, dropped four balls into the water before he three-putted for a 12. He was in 10th place before he played the 17th, but his third-round 80 steered him to a T56 finish.

Bob Tway 2005 Players

Bob Tway stumbled to a 12 on the 17th during the 2005 Players.
Getty Images


Feet covered by Tiger Woods's birdie putt on the 17th during the third round of the 2001 Players, a shot — and call — that's been viewed hundreds of thousands of times since. "Better than most..." NBC's Gary Koch repeated as the ball tracked toward the cup. That putt helped Woods notch his first win at Sawgrass.


Total balls lost on the 17th during the Players since 2003, when the tournament started to track this statistic. Forty-five were lost in 2015, 36 found the water in 2016 and 69 in 2017.


Estimated number of golf balls, according to the Players website, that find the water every year on the 17th hole.

Diver, Sawgrass, 2007

An estimated 100,000-plus golf balls find their way into the water surrounding the 17th.
Caryn Levy/PGA TOUR


Aces made on the 17th hole during the Players. The list includes Brad Fabel (1986), Brian Claar (1991), Fred Couples (1997), Joey Sindelar (1999), Paul Azinger (2000), Miguel Angel Jimenez (2002), Will Wilcox (2016) and Sergio Garcia (2017).


Seagull that took Steve Lowery's ball from the 17th green and flew off with it before dropping it into the water during the 1998 Players. Under the Rules of Golf, Lowery was allowed to place his ball at the spot where it came to rest on the green without a penalty.


Feet and inches of the longest putt ever made on the island green during the ShotLink era. Bernhard Langer drained that monster during the second round in 2008.


Balls hit into the water by amateurs during a February day in 2011, according to a GOLF Magazine study that wanted to see how non-pros fared on the famous hole. Sixty-six out of 136 found the water from the tee, and about two-thirds of those players (41 of 66) found the water again from the drop zone.


Yards, approximately, the green measures across. A peninsula on the back side of it is used as a walkway. There's one small pot bunker that sits in front of the green.

Island Green TPC Sawgrass

When GOLF tracked a February day at the 17th in 2011, a total of 107 balls were hit into the water.
Fred Vuich for SI

You May Like