Correct Golf Course Management, Part II Video
I would now like to talk to you again about your best Course Management, but Course Management specifically relating to around the greens. I think when we talk about how to best Course Management most people think about a basic dog like hole with a pond and then thinking about playing around the dog leg. And that sounds quite obvious because there is no sort of natural target when you are standing on a Tee, and yes you want to hit the ball as far down there but if there is a pond in the way I can play away from that, but when you get around the greens and as soon as you get within sight of the flag there is a natural sort of target of I want to get the ball as close as possible to the flag and some people would then overlook the dangers that the flag can often sort of bring into your game. So if there is a flag that’s very tight to the water for example, that water is actually very detrimental thing to your score, it can add 1 shot for every time you go in the water. So you knock it in the water that’s not a great shot. It then costs you a penalty and the penalty shot might then have you back where you started or the wrong side of the water so you have to chip over it again. Likewise if the flag is too close to the bunker you get a bit attracted to the flag you hit the ball in the bunker that can cost you 1 or 2 to get out as well.
So it’s really important that you assess every shot around the green, whether it’s a chip short or a put in terms of where the reward is, the flag and where the danger is, the slopes the hollows the bunker the water. And plot your way around quite nicely, it’s not always the best shot or the best choice to go directly at the flag. Particularly when you are putting you might feel that every time you are putting you always want to hit the ball as well as you can towards the flag, but if you have got a very big sloping green and particularly after the flag there is another big slope down it’s really important that you assess those slopes and your putt it’s just nice and carefully legged up there then you can be a bit more aggressive with your second shot. With your second putt I would always encourage you to get that to the hole try and get that one in, but don’t stand there from 4 to 5 feet away to run the ball into the back of the hole for a birdy if it then runs off down the slope and topples of the green and then leaves you with a very difficult shot coming back. Likewise when you are chipping from around the green don’t always run straight to the hole if that’s then going to leave you a very tricky down hill putt it’s often better to chip the ball short into a nice flatter area part of the green, I personally would rather have a 20 foot putt on the flat then a 10 foot putt down a slope. So if I am chipping up to a green I would look at whether nicest flattest areas are and put myself in that position to then putt from there.
So Course Management is around the green very important. One of the thing is actually when you get an easy chip shot maybe just on the fringe of the green you have decided to chip the ball off and then let it release down to the flag, when you have got an easy chip shot like that try and take it like a putt try and read the green with the same sort of subtleties that you would do the same accuracies that you would do if you are actually taking a putt. Take the flag out even that kind of sends a message to the brain that we are trying to hold this one, leaving the flag or anything but just nudge it up there as a chip shot. As soon as I take the flag out I look at it like oh this is like a long putt now I have got a bit more chance of trying to make this it focuses the brain a little bit more.
So don’t just think Course Management is stood back on the T missing out and knocking it around dog legs and around the water missing the water, take your Course Management skills and apply them around the green. Reading the greens better, looking for the hazards and not always getting drawn too close to the flags. Thinking better could improve your skills.