Every golf shot as a plethora of possibilities. I never observed any golf shot that only had one shot available to the player. There is always another option, it might not be a good one, but it is still an option. That is where the mix between course management and player ability cross. The trick is to choose the right shot for you and commit to playing it. Recently, I asked a question about a specific shot and not surprisingly, the responses were varied to meet the strengths of each player. The title of this article is a direct quote by Tony Ellis that sums up the possibilities for any golf shot.
The question I asked was very straight forward (at least I thought) and figured that a wedge would be most popular answer. Well, that was not the case, but lets look at the question first:
Although this picture is from 60 yards, this is the idea in my head when I asked the question. Of course the limitations of Twitter (or my abilities) I could not add the image with the question. But, I proceeded anyway.
Of course when I aske this type of ‘how would you play’ question, I have an answer in my mind that best suits my game. Since I was focused on wedges, my preferred response was a sand wedge that lands 8 yards from the pin and rolls out to the cup. This is a standard shot or so I thought. Many responses corrected my approach and reminded me that there is no one, correct way to play this or any golf shot. We have to keep our minds open to the possibilities that success can be found in many different approaches.
Some of the non-wedge answers included a 7-rion, 8-iron, 9-iron, hybrid, 3 metal, and putter. Of course the exact club will depend the cut of the grass and course conditions, but I think you can see that my narrow view of an expected response was quickly destroyed by the diverse answers. I guess I should to really be surprised as I consistently talk about looking at several options for each shot.
Again, there is never just one specific answer to any golf shot. Automatically reaching for a specific club when within 30 yards of the green, regardless of the lie and conditions, is a course management failure. This approach should be changed if we are planning to lower our golf scores and play more consistent golf.
On a side note, a respondent to a previous question offered a stat to count that might be of use. I am to track the number of shots I make from 60 yards or closer (including putts) to demonstrate exactly how much of my score is dependent of my short game. I have never tracked this number and I think it will provide some hard data to use in future articles. More to follow on this topic.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!