What is Amen Corner at the Masters?

What is Amen Corner at the Masters?
Photo by Icon Sport

Anyone who has ever watched the Masters will have heard all about “Amen Corner”. It almost has a mythical status at Augusta National and for good reason. Amen Corner is the name given to holes 11, 12, and 13 at Augusta and they are historically three of the hardest holes on the famous course.

While you can’t win the Masters over this three-hole stretch, many players down the years have lost their grip on the green jacket or fallen out of contention around Amen Corner. The three holes are set up to either trap players or tempt them into shots they shouldn’t really take.

The vast majority of players who own a green jacket from the Masters have all had to navigate Amen Corner with their egos in check.

Why is it called Amen Corner?

Holes 11, 12 and 13 were first labelled “Amen Corner” by Herbert Warren Wind in an article written for Sports Illustrated. Wind, who was one of the most well-respected sportswriters of his generation in the USA, wrote:

“At the farthest reach of the Augusta National course—down in the Amen Corner where Rae’s Creek intersects the 13th fairway near the tee, then parallels the front edge of the green on the short 12th and finally swirls alongside the 11th green.”

Wind later said that the name was inspired by a song called “Shoutin’ in that Amen Corner” by Mildred Bailey and the Dorsey Brothers Orchestra.

Amen Corner – hole by hole

Hole 11

The 11th hole at Augusta National is a 520-yard par 4 which most professionals are happy enough to leave with a par. There is an ominous pond just in front of the left-hand side of the green meaning that a near-perfect tee shot is required if you want to even consider attacking the green with your second shot.

Many players have fallen victim of being too aggressive on the 11th over the years and have ended up in the water. As a result, some players elect to lay up with their second shot before attempting to get up and down with a short chip.

Hole 12

The 12th hole, like the other two holes around Amen Corner, also has a water hazard near the green. However, as the 12th is a par-3, there is no real option of playing safe and laying up. If you want to go long to play safe then you’re going to end up in a bunker so this hole forces players to be brave and aggressive.

On the 12th, the water hazard is Rae’s Creek which comes very much into play on Sunday with organisers placing the pin right at the front of the green.

Hole 13

The final hole of Amen Corner is a very accessible par-5 for today’s big hitters. At 545 yards long, it is barely longer than the par-4 11th. However, get your tee shot wrong and you can quite easily end up in pine straw which gives you a dilemma.

The hole has been extended by 30 yards for the 2023 tournament to make it more difficult for those who can drive the ball over 300 yards.

Subscribe to Punditfeed on Google News for all the latest updates from the world of sports!