I once heard the saying that golf is a game of misses. It’s a game of many different things but this statement is true and very overlooked. Most of this post will talk about course management and opening your eyes to what really is a good shot and what is a bad one and I’m not talking how close it is the flag.
If you watch some of the Professionals on TV you’ll hear a commentator talk about a player being “short sided”. This refers to a player missing the green where there very little green to work with. So even though you may have hit the best shot of your life, you might actually be left with a short sided chip that will be difficult to get up and down. Where as you could have hit an average shot to the proper side of the green and easily two putted.
The easiest way to avoid getting into situations where you are often short sided is to aim away from tucked flag sticks on greens. Below is another picture of a hole at Chambers Bay with tucked flag on the back left of the green with a bunker on the left as well.
Even though the flag stick and cup are the end goal, it’s best to aim away from this flag stick since it’s a high risk shot. Chambers Bay is hosting the 2015 US Open and if the pin was in this position, my guess would be that 5% of the field would actually aim at the pin. So the play is to place your ball as best you can to the right side of the green or even just off also being 10 yards short of pin high. This give you the best angle to hit your second shot close and get up and down for a par 3. If you were to go into the bunker left of the hole, a 4 would be a really good score and unless your a good bunker player a par 3 would be almost of the question.
Once again you must create your own targets based on your playability and comfort ability. If you were a really good bunker play and felt comfortable hitting a shot in the flag with a desired right to left ball flight, I would say try and go at the pin and see if you can make a birdie. But if your not comfortable with that ball flight or bunkers then aim at the wide open area of grass to the right of the hole, it’s a much easier shot! One thing to note is that the yardage to the pin might be 145 yards but for the target that you are hitting at (the big round blue circle) it will be only 110-135 yards so the shot will play shorter making it easier all around. Also, be sure to aim either left or right of the
So there you have it! Stay away from sucker pins, come up with your own target, aim point and join my free Golf Instruction newsletter by clicking here and start playing better golf now!