Saturday, June 1, 2013

How to play with 3 clubs and still play 2 over par?

Woke up to a wonderful morning. My foot is not hurting anymore and I feel great , even though it was a tough and wet round yesterday at Bobby Jones Golf Complex. Our Friday round is one of my favorite events. It is competitive, not too expensive for a practice round and the guys who are playing are fun and very good golfers. On the way to the course there was plenty of clouds coming in and so I checked for the weather and it actually did not sound too bad. Some rain, no thunder and no storm. I do not mind the rain. I lived 15 years in Seattle, WA and so I am used to play golf in rain and have rain around me all the time. But lightning and thunder is always a concern. Even though you do not play in it, it is there and comes fast here in Florida. But when I got to the course, everything looked fine. A quick warm up and I was ready to play. I decided to take a cart because of my foot. Just want to let it heal all the way. We had a good group. All golfers with low handicaps. Me being the lowest. We played well and steady. I was 6 over par through 14 and had a long and good drive on 15, setting myself up for the 2nd birdie of the day. ( I played a mixed round. My scrambling was great, my drives not so straight. I did some incredible saves and my short game is on). Then the very black cloud we watched for 20 minutes was right there and it started pouring down on us like crazy. We thought shelter and decided to wait it out, as the other groups did the same thing. After about 30 minutes, everybody decided to be done. There was no thunder and no lightning. So I decided to finish. I had towels with me, umbrella and clothes to change. The rain still was coming down. So I finished this hole with a bogey, lipping out my put on a swimming green. Next hole got another bogey, which was not that bad considering the conditions. On 17 I hit a good iron but got an interesting break. I hit the rake and it kicked left. Leaving me with a difficult chip and so I got a par on that one. 18 was pretty much unplayable. I felt great, because I finished. That was good practice and according to players like Nick Faldo and Seve Ballesteros, one needs to practice all situations. You might wonder what all that has to do with the title? Nothing. But here it comes. After drying for a while a friend asked me to play another 9 holes. I looked outside and the weather seemed very nice. So I agreed. But then he said we will play with only three clubs we pick before we start. ( he mostly plays with 3 clubs only and his about a 10 handicap!). I picked out the 3 wood, 6 iron and PW. Those clubs have the broadest use in my bag and I practice many shots with them. We played the back 9 of the British side of Bobby Jones Golf Complex. He took the lead after 3 holes and was two up through 5. On the difficult number 15, a long par 4, I was able to get a par and get one back. The last 3 holes I was dominant and that was despite it started pouring down again so hard , that we had an ocean on 18. But I played a great par on 16 into a wall of rain. Had a great tee shot into the same wall of rain on 17 and got a par there. 18 was unplayable, but I had two great shots towards the green. I was putting with my PW and made putts from 6, 8 and 10 feet. My 6 iron was dead on from 120 to 160 and my 3 wood worked great for all the rest. Key was to avoid the bunkers, keep it in the fairway and not to over swing. I played 2 over par ! Considering the rain, wind and that I played with 3 clubs, that is pretty good. I have to say, that I actually practice all kinds of shots with those 3 clubs and was prepared. Other then putting I do all kinds of distances and shapes with those, because you never know what you encounter on the course. So how do you play and play well with 3 clubs? Practice. Go to the range and practice different shots and shapes with a few clubs you like most. I was so wet, I was dripping and I was tired. It is harder to play in pouring ran and windy conditions. But it was fun and a great test for skill, which I pasted easily.

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