Twenty four hours later, I had the opportunity to analyze the goods, bads and uglys of my play at the Ontario Regional Golf Tournament. It is not a chance to whine or point fingers at outside influences that may have negatively affected my game during the past three days. It is an opportunity to look at possible areas of improvement to move forward and still work towards my goal of being a scratch golfer.
I decided to use The Good, The Bad, The Ugly style of introspection to make sure I keep what was good and improve on the other aspects of my game. However, I do not like to end on a bad note for anything, so I am going to reverse the order to end on a positive note.
Decision Making – each day, I made two poor decisions about shot selection. Each time, it was counter to my game plan and as a result it cost me 2 penalty strokes each day. These were mental errors that should not have made their way into my decision-making cycle. The area of improvement is that I know better and talked myself out of the right decision over half the time.
Chipping – I was not able to adjust to the greens while chipping over the four days. The lack of practice facilities (of any kind) did hamper my warm up, but I did have the opportunity to adjust….I just didn’t! I was very frustrated because a player of my experience should have been able to adjust, so this is a lesson learned and I will find ways to improve my ability to adjust to various conditions in the future.
Driving The Ball – my new clubs are awesome. I felt comfortable hitting all the clubs, however I had difficult hitting my driver. I was straight, but the new 12 degree loft was something that reduced my distance off the tee. I was consistently 25 yards shorter than normal off the tee. I did hit some that I would call normal shots and will work on hitting this club better in the future.
Approach shots from 150-100 yards – from this distance, I was only about 50% GIR. I struggled with my alignment this week. I am not sure why, but I will hit the range with my alignment sticks and work on my swing. Part of the challenge might be that I have tried to change too many things this year and as a result my approach shots have suffered. It could also be a lull in my play of late from that distance, but I need to find out.
Ability to scramble – This week I relied on my ability to score well through the ups and downs of my game. It seemed that every time I was struggling, I would make several great strokes to bring my game back to normal. I consistently hit my 4 and 5 iron very well. Atypical to great play, my success from 175-200 yards raised my confidence and ability to play well.
My game plan – my game plan was very good. Having played at Petawawa before, I felt that my understanding of the how to play the course was a benefit. As stated earlier, I did make a couple poor decisions, but my overall strategy worked. I played within myself and took advantage of my strengths. The time spent on planning was time well spent!
Meeting Old and New Friends – This was definitely a good! It was outstanding to re-acquaint myself with old friends. I have met these players year in and year out at golf Regionals and every time it is fun to catch up on all the happenings in their lives. Additionally, meeting new friends who are attending Regionals for the first time. This year I played with one young gentlemen for two rounds and one gentlemen for three rounds. Both were excellent playing partners and I look forward to playing a round of golf with them in the future.
Objectively looking at my performance at the Ontario Regional Golf Tournament helps me be a better golfer. If I focus on my weaknesses and capitalize on my strengths, things should get better. It is difficult to identify our weaknesses and to make the decision to do something about it. I believe that this approach is good in life and is a natural extension to my golf game.
So I am off the range to see if I can duplicate my errors and find positive solutions to improve my game. I think that this process is an important part of being a better golfer. My approach has worked in the past and with any luck will produce positive results now.
Thanks for reading and I am always open to positive comments!
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!