When playing a golf shot from a greenside bunker, the priority is to hit a high shot that clears the bunker face and lands out of the bunker on the green.
To hit a high shot from a greenside bunker, when addressing the golf ball you would open up the club face of your sand iron to add even more loft, or club face angle, on to the club head to play the shot with. When you walk into a greenside bunker and are faced with a buried lie, you initially would think that you need to open up your club face to hit a high shot. However, this is completely the wrong approach. Opening up the club face simply means rotating it to the right (for right handed golfers) so that the club face angles back even more. When you do this though, the bounce of the golf club, or the curve on the underside of the club head when the face is open, comes in to play. The bounce of the club head is exactly that. It is bounce to help the club head rebound up the sand when it strikes it. When you are faced with a buried lie, you need the club head to dig into the sand underneath the golf ball and the bounce will actually hinder this.
To play an effective shot from a buried lie in a greenside bunker, you actually need to close the club face and remove the loft or club face angle. The reason for this is that you are going to play the shot so that the toe of the club head strikes the sand and digs into it with the leading edge, or lower part of the club face. As the leading edge digs in at the toe, this area of the club face will be slowed down by the impact with the sand. However, the heel of the club head will still travel at the higher speed that the head had before striking the sand and the club face will rotate and twist, digging itself underneath the golf ball and getting the golf ball up from the buried lie.
To address the ball in order for this to happen, enter the bunker, set your feet up shoulder width apart and wriggle your feet into the sand so that you have a firm base to play the shot from. Aim your club face at the target and align your feet parallel, left of the target (for right handed golfers). Now close the club face by rotating the handle of the golf club around to the left. This will turn the club face to the left of the target. Ensure that the ball is left of centre and slightly forward in your stance. Place slightly more weight on your left side and set your hands ahead of the club head. To do this, position your hands so that they are opposite your left thigh. Work on swinging the club head away from the ball by picking the club head up by using your wrists so that the club head makes a steeping movement away from the golf ball.
You need to play the shot with a V shaped swing and a steep angle of attack back down towards the golf ball, so set yourself up and then using your wrists to create a steep movement away from the ball will allow you to make an aggressive downward action so that the toe of the club head strikes the sand first about two inches before the ball. If the toe strikes the sand first, the club face will rotate and dig through the sand and under the golf ball as the club head travels down through the sand. Ensure that you rotate your body through the shot as you do this and finish with your body rotated left of the target, your right foot up from the sand with your shoe laces rotated towards the target and the club head higher than the flag.
This will get you to play some fantastic golf shots from a really difficult position of a buried lie and with some practice from this situation you will very quickly be able to achieve some great results using this technique.