During a typical round, if you're faced with either a tee shot or a fairway shot where you can either go over the water and cut the distance or lay up and ensure you're staying dry, which do you choose?
Balls or Birdies? (POLL)
Poll Results: Which do you choose?
63% (12)GO FOR IT! No guts, no glory
36% (7)Stay Dry; Better safe than sorry
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I voted go for it, but obviously it depends on the exact circumstances. In general my distances are pretty consistent (as far as worrying about clearing a hazard, not pro style within a yard or two or anything), so if I've got a shot to a green on my 2nd shot on a par 5 that requires a 4i or a 2h shot to get to the green and there's water between me and the green but there's not water right or left of the green, then I'm going for it.
On a par 5 I'm more willing to lay up if it's unnecessarily risky. On a par 4 I'm going for the green pretty much every time, though I'm a pretty long hitter so unless there's a huge dog leg and I had to hit an iron off the tee, I'm generally not going to have anything longer than a 6i into the green, and I'm not laying up from 6i or less distance to a par 4 green pretty much no matter what.
It also depends from the tee box. If I can hit a shorter club and totally take water out of play but still leave myself with a 5i or 6i into the green, then I might go for it, depending on exactly where the water is and how the hole's laid out and such. If hitting a short tee shot only takes the water out of play if I set up for a 2h to a par 4 green, then I'm probably just gonna hit driver or 3w and go for it.
How about this answer: It Depends.
How's my swing feeling that day?
Where do I stand in my match?
What's my confidence level - do I feel like I can pull it off?
If it's Match Play, where's my opponent on the hole?
It's not, and never has been, an absolute question I can easily answer yes or no. Give me the exact same shot two days in a row & I may lay up day one and go for it day two. Or reverse. Or lay up both days or go for it both days.
When playing alone, I prefer to stay dry off the tee. I often lose sight of tee shots on forced carries, but into the greens I can usually pick up the ball.
If it's a team event and someone else is counting on my score, I'll take my chances with a wedge and putter. On my own ball and with other people watching (spotting) I'll likely give it a rip.
It's really hard to say and really depends on a number of factors. If I have a lot of green to work with on the other side of the water, maybe I'll go for it because I can club up a little, but if there's crap behind the green as well I'm probably gonna lay up. It also depends how far out I am in general, how the swing is that day, how the score is that day, weather, etc.
Both. Because it depends.
First hole each Saturday offers a carry-and-leave-70-yards-or-less shot or a simple 5-iron down the fairway. Narrow landing area if you go for it but if the wind is not messing you up, you can even drive the green. Miss the carry shot and you are teeing again most of the time. Hit the simple shot and you have 140 or less to the green. I almost always hit the 5-iron.
Fifth hole has a split fairway. Carry the water to the left fairway and you have 100-125 left to the green. Miss it and the drop area leaves you 220 to the green guarded by that water. OR, go straight and the tee shot is forgiving and easy. But you are left with anywhere from 130-175 to the green and you need to carry the water on that is now right in front of the green when approaching from the right fairway. In my group, I am the only guy who always goes left off the tee. Landing area is more forgiving than it looks and it only takes a good shot (not a great shot) to be safe. On the first tee, it takes a great shot to be safe.
I couldn't vote...........
It just depends on the situation, the percentages, and how I am playing that day. I play both conservative golf and pick my spots to play aggressive too. I've been faced with the exact same shot on different days, and both laid up and attacked at different times. When I do attack, I am confident I will succeed. The key...IMO...is knowing what you are capable of and knowing your game.
IE....I often see beginners/higher HC players attempt aggressive shots with virtually no chance of success. I think there is a big difference between playing aggressive and stupid. The key is knowing the difference between the two...LOL
I'd say it is a big difference and a very fine line. It is often very hard to tell which side of that line I'm on as I address the ball. 99% of the time, the line becomes very clear when the ball is in the air.
Not too often you see someone posing after a perfect shot, and they yell, "Dang it! I am such an idiot! I should've gone for it."
We all know where the line is when we take our blinders off.