In Volume 1 of The Confidential Guide to Golf Courses, Tom Doak published that.
“Deal is a course that must be played to be appreciated. On first glance it is no match for the romantic large dunes of Sandwich, which are very close to the far end of the links, and the sea wall that runs along the shore reduces the water views to an occasional peek. But the smaller ground contours are wonderful for fairways, and the undulations in and around the greens are some of the best of any British links. The finishing run back into the prevailing wind is especially difficult, most of all the long 16th with a large bunker sixty yards short of its elevated green.”
Royal Cinque Ports received a score of 7 out of 10 from Tom Doak and 8 out of 10 from two of his co-authors.