English Golf Courses

Escape thick rough – every time!


Just because you’re in long grass doesn’t mean your score needs to suffer

Every now and then, you will find deep rough but I see so many amateurs finding their ball then rather than accepting the situation and trying to get the ball back into play, they compound the error by becoming flag obsessed and take on that high risk shot.

This is the fastest way to pile on shots. Playing out of the deep rough is difficult for every player in the game.

While changing your technique slightly will enhance your chances through impact, only you can decide the route you take.

Practise the shot by incorporating the changes mentioned and get to know your limitations. Remember: one recovery shot is better for the score than two.

Once your chosen your route, you then have to execute it. Firstly, grip a little further down the handle and a little firmer than normal. Both these changes are necessary counter measures to try and maintain an element of clubhead control, as the grass will have an obstructive influence.

Open your clubface slightly and try to maintain this throughout the movement. The grass will try to grab and twist the clubface closed. If you preset it open with more loft to begin with you have a bigger margin for error.

Finally, make sure you hinge your wrists early in your back-swing. Minimising the effect of the grass promotes a steeper than normal approach. Set up with your weight favouring your target side leg and hinge your wrists on the backswing, hitting down into the ball.

Follow these pointers and you should see a marked improvement in your fortunes next time you find yourself in the thick stuff.

Scott Clark is a PGA teaching pro at the Colin Montgomerie Links Golf Academy at Turnberry. For lessons, call Scott on 01655 334190. Follow him on Twitter @ScottClarkPGA

Originally published on bunkered on January 28, 2012.

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