Grabbing Inspiration from Master Seve Ballesteros

Imagination…all the great players have it, an ability to create a shot to get out of trouble.  Just a few weeks ago we lost the master at this art, Seve Ballesteros.

I had the privilege to play with Seve in 1983 before he won the Masters.  Seve had been suspended by the PGA Tour for not playing the minimum events required the year before.  He was, however, eligible to compete in our majors over here.

To prepare for the Masters, Seve played in a mini-tour event in Lake City, FL the week before.  It’s not too often someone like me playing the mini-tour gets to play with the No.1 ranked player in the world in an event.  It just does not happen.  It was an honor, to say the least.  However, the story ends about five years laterat the Westchester Classic in New York.  I am hitting balls on the range and Seve walks up to me, shakes my hand and asked me how I had been.  It still gives me goosebumps writing about it today.  Not only was he a legend he was a great guy.  Golf will miss him.

In honor of Seve, I would like to share with you a little known short game escape shot that will help you get out of some very difficult situations.

You’re near the green and you need to hit a high lob shot that will land on the green and stop.  To add to the difficulty of this shot, your ball is resting on hardpan with very little grass if any.  For whatever reason, putting is not an option.  Your normal pitch is not going to work here and you fear blading it over the green.  What can you do?

Take your sand wedge or lob wedge, place the toe of the club on the ground with the heal of the club in the air.  As we address the ball in order to keep the toe on the ground we will need to stand in an upright position.  The hands will be close to the body and the shaft will have no angle.  It will be straight up and down.

Once in this position, we are going to make a putting stroke hitting the ball on the toe of the club.  This simple motion will git a very soft floater like shot that will land on the green and stop.  What we have done here by using the toe of the club we greatly reduced the chance of the club bouncing off of the hardpan.

Work with this until you get the hang of it.  If it is not working your using your hands too much. (Putting stroke) for the good player this becomes another option.  For the average player with any lie around the green your going to see this is much easier than hitting the flop shot.  In fact, it just might become your “go to” shot.