Sometimes I am faced with a unique shot that challenges my ability to focus on hitting the ball and not the conditions around me. Well, a few days ago, I had this exact situation and I decided to rise to the challenge. I mean why not, I was playing well and felt that the conditions were perfect for something good to happen.
Before I get into the results, let me describe how I ended up in this position. This series of shots occurred on the 4th hole of Osprey Lings Golf Course. I rarely make the green in two and this was not one of those days. After my drive, I decided to hit my 3 hybrid for position instead of blasting my 3 wood to within 50 yards of the green. I felt that playing to yardage of 100 yards for a full shot was smart and the right play.
Unfortunately, I did not hit my 3 hybrid crisp and was going to be about 125 yards out, which was still find. As my ball tracked down the right side of the fairway, it took one of those amazingly crappy bounces straight right to stop beside the bull rushes. Our course is very dry and sometimes these things happen, it is the rub of the green.
So there I was, 125 yards from the green and you can see how I marked the pin. This is normally a pitching wedge, but I thought I would take an extra club so I did not have to swing hard. I had a clear view of the pin and had to go over the 6 foot vegetation just 3 paces from my ball. With a 9 iron, I felt that there was plenty of room and erased the bull rushes from my mind. I focused on hitting the pin or at least landing on the green. I took aim and let the ball fly!
I made great contact, however I was left of my target line (not surprising) and landed in the sand trap left of the guy in the blue shirt on the green. I was quite happy with the result, but disappointed as well that I did not at least land on the green. The distance was perfect, just left of my target line.
This shot is a perfect example of how concentration and focus helps make great golf shots. After surveying things like ball position, hazard distances, lie of the ball, swing path challenges, wind, and stance. I felt this shot was not going to be that difficult. So, I eliminated everything out of my mind except for my target. The fact that I pulled the ball a bit left is not an issue because that happens. I was very happy with the contact and that my decision making processes were spot on.
There was very little risk in this shot and it was fun to give it a try. I know that moving forward, if faced with a similar shot, it is possible and I need not worry about failure. Although I walked off the green with a bogey, I was happy with the entire experience.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!