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PGA Championship, Monday report

Oak Hill a stern, fair challenge from start to finish

3rd Hole - This, on the other hand, is not a birdie hole. at 214 yards, it's all the par-three you want. Go long, and the chip down the hill is brutal. Land short, and a false front will propel the ball down 20 yards or more. Much better to be in the sand if you miss the green. Simple here - find the green, accept par every time. Anything less is a bonus.

4th Hole - The shorter of the two par-fives, but it still traverses 570 yards and bends twice before reaching a tiered green that, again, is toughest on top. The tee shot dictates the game plan - either try to go over two gaping bunkers on the right to try and get home in two, or go left of them, lay up and still have a good birdie chance.

5th Hole - Nothing tough here, just 428 yards that includes Allen's Creek close-up off the tee to the right, heavy rough and a bunker to the left, and an approach over that same creek to a green with a shaved bank, so anything short could get wet. Accuracy first, caution second. Better to be long on the second shot, even if it means a difficult two-putt. It beats the soggy alternative.

6th Hole - Just as at 5, they've shaved the bank on this 175-yard beauty. The green has distinct tiers. When the hole is right, a bunker must be carried. When it's left, balls can feed off the slope close (like that '89 U.S. Open and its four aces), but just a few feet too far left, and it's a slow, painful trip to Allen's Creek. You could get anything from 1 to 6 here.

7th Hole - Maybe the toughest par-four on the front. Stretching out 461 yards, Allen's Creek again intrudes on the right, and a 20-yard-wide fairway means going left isn't much fun, either. More difficult is the second shot, for the green is tiny and, again, crowned. Going long is not recommended. Most days, par is quite welcome here.

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