Huntingdale Golf Club, located in the heart of Melbourne’s world-famous Sandbelt region, is one of Australia’s premier championship golf courses. Consistently rated as one of the best conditioned courses in the country, Huntingdale is also the Sandbelt’s youngest.
About the Club
Rising to fame in 1979 with the inaugural hosting of the Australian Masters, Huntingdale has emerged as one of the most recognisable golf courses in Australia. Since 1979, Huntingdale has played host to some of the most famous names in golf, including Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Seve Ballesteros, Greg Norman, Nick Faldo and world number one, Tiger Woods.
Huntingdale’s golf affiliations go back to 1896, when Surrey Hills Golf Club was established. The Club prospered until 1914, when it disbanded on the outbreak of the First World War. By 1941, after moving from the Surrey Hills site, to Canterbury Road in Box Hill then Doncaster Road, Doncaster, club members elected to move into the Sandbelt region, and onto land previously used for coursing by the Melbourne Hunt Club. When the course re-opened in 1941, it took the name Huntingdale Golf Club.
The course design at Huntingdale was entrusted to renowned English golf architect C.H. (Hugh) Alison and is today the only example of his work to be found in Australia. Alison is probably best known for his golf architecture partnership with H.S. Colt and together the pair were responsible for many of England’s best known courses including Sunningdale and Wentworth.
The course greets golfers with superbly manicured fairways, strategic bunkering, large true greens and great memories of the game’s finest players gracing the fairways in the Australian Masters. This combination of features ensures that Huntingdale challenges the best professionals and the latest technology.
The greens at Huntingdale are true and fast and are kept in ‘Masters’ condition throughout the year. Players hitting wayward shots to the far side of the greens can anticipate long undulating putts. The final stretch of holes contain some of the toughest and finest finishing holes in the world.
In the words of Paul Casey, ranked World #8, July 2010:
“If I could play golf for the rest of my life, for fun, I would play courses like Huntingdale. It’s almost like something magical…”
8th PAR 4, 314 Metres
The 8th hole at Huntingdale, like so many on the sandbelt, is made by a beautiful green. The hole is only a drive and a pitch — longer of course if it’s into the north wind — but the green is ever so subtly set to play advantageously to a drive down the left. The left line is defended by tea– tree and the fairway stretches far to the right, encouraging players to play far away from the ideal line into the flag. The green is long, making for interesting shots across the front bunker if the pin is short and brave shots flying all the way back if the pin is in the far quarter of the green.
All of the sandbelt courses are characterized by difficult bunker shots. The bunkers cut right into the edge of the greens leaving little room to stop the ball of you miss on the wrong side. Here missing to the right in the deep bunkers makes bogey a near certainly.