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What's the hardest shot in golf?


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30 yard pitches to the green are tough - as is any chip to a downsloping green.  One of the hardest shots for me is a punch-out under low hanging branches.  I rarely make flush contact on the course - unless there are some branches that might potentially get in the way if I hit it a bit too high.  And my aim gets deadly in this scenario - if there is a branch that is even 1 inch in diameter, I can hit it dead-center so the ball comes straight back at me.

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To paraphrase Lee Travino..... .......a 4 foot putt for $5, when you only have $2 in your wallet!

I'd also include the 10-12 foot putt with zero break. Much better at hitting to a spot when there's even an inch or two of break. That one's a mental thing.

The NEXT shot after a random shank!!!!!

When I hit a wild one with the driver....

and end up with a punch shot out of the rough - under the tree limbs and over the water to the green. Some days I just chip out sideways to the fairway.

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Originally Posted by WUTiger

When I hit a wild one with the driver....

and end up with a punch shot out of the rough - under the tree limbs and over the water to the green. Some days I just chip out sideways to the fairway.

In that situation, you should probably always chip out.  It might help bring your handicap down.

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pitches inside 40 yards when I've screwed myself on a good angle to the green or being on the short side of the green(probably my last really bad part of course management....missing "good").  Its intimidating to me to have to pitch over a bunker or over a creek from these short distances and it usually never fails that the green is also sloping away or I have to land it on some big mound and hope for the right kick.

Another scary shot is very thick rough greenside when you don't need to fly the ball very far.  I sometimes worry about being so precise that I end up blading the ball trying to make perfect contact.

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Toughest shots for me, in rank order:

1. Anything less than a full wedge from a muddy or squishy lie.

2. Tee shot to a tight fairway with a hurting left-to-right wind.

3. Bunker shot from 40-80 yards.

Some have mentioned shots from hardpan as being difficult.  Honestly, I love hardpan:  absolutely nothing to interfere with clean contact, and you know you'll be getting plenty of spin.  Even into the wind, hardpan is king because I know the ball will come out low and clean, and I can club up 2 or 3 clubs and still get plenty of spin to stop it on the green.  The only hardpan shot that I find tricky is a pitch to a short-sided pin, but even then I know I can land it 20 or so feet past the flag and the ball will either stop immediately or back up a few feet.  The same shot from a muddy or squishy lie will find me looking for the safest margin-of-error shot every time, which usually means blasting to a fat part of the green, well away from the hole, with very little spin and very muddy trousers.

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I agree with the short-sided downhill chip out of rough. It's almost guaranteed to turn your swing into a spastic jab/twitch/stab. If you can make a smooth swing on this shot you know you're good.

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Originally Posted by zipazoid

The 40-50 yard bunker shot. It's that 'tweener' shot between blasting it & picking it clean. I screw it up every time.

This came up on another thread. I saw a solution to this shot on a 'tips and advice' piece during a tournament on TV, and it was to use somewhere between PW - 8i, and play it like a greenside bunker shot; open up the face some (aim left of target accordingly), and go ahead and take sand while sliding the clubhead under the ball with good acceleration. I have been using this strategy ever since and it works like a charm - ball comes out high and soft.

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Originally Posted by dak4n6

Quote:

Originally Posted by zipazoid

The 40-50 yard bunker shot. It's that 'tweener' shot between blasting it & picking it clean. I screw it up every time.

This came up on another thread. I saw a solution to this shot on a 'tips and advice' piece during a tournament on TV, and it was to use somewhere between PW - 8i, and play it like a greenside bunker shot; open up the face some (aim left of target accordingly), and go ahead and take sand while sliding the clubhead under the ball with good acceleration. I have been using this strategy ever since and it works like a charm - ball comes out high and soft.

Yep.  had good success with an 8I on this shot.

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Originally Posted by k-troop

Toughest shots for me, in rank order:

1. Anything less than a full wedge from a muddy or squishy lie.

2. Tee shot to a tight fairway with a hurting left-to-right wind.

3. Bunker shot from 40-80 yards.

Some have mentioned shots from hardpan as being difficult.  Honestly, I love hardpan:  absolutely nothing to interfere with clean contact, and you know you'll be getting plenty of spin.  Even into the wind, hardpan is king because I know the ball will come out low and clean, and I can club up 2 or 3 clubs and still get plenty of spin to stop it on the green.  The only hardpan shot that I find tricky is a pitch to a short-sided pin, but even then I know I can land it 20 or so feet past the flag and the ball will either stop immediately or back up a few feet.  The same shot from a muddy or squishy lie will find me looking for the safest margin-of-error shot every time, which usually means blasting to a fat part of the green, well away from the hole, with very little spin and very muddy trousers.

How are you getting so much spin off of hard pan?

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Originally Posted by dak4n6

This came up on another thread. I saw a solution to this shot on a 'tips and advice' piece during a tournament on TV, and it was to use somewhere between PW - 8i, and play it like a greenside bunker shot; open up the face some (aim left of target accordingly), and go ahead and take sand while sliding the clubhead under the ball with good acceleration. I have been using this strategy ever since and it works like a charm - ball comes out high and soft.

Thanks...I'll have to try that.

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Originally Posted by Beachcomber

How are you getting so much spin off of hard pan?

With a tight, firm lie, you can come clean into the ball.  I squeeze the ball into the turf, and release my hands through the ball so that the clubface is actually accelerating through the point of impact.  This causes the ball to compress into the turf and stay on the face for an extra few milliseconds, maximizing interaction with the grooves.

I got the idea for this shot listening to Johnny Miller describe a trap draw.

In all seriousness it's just that a tight clean lie provides no impediments to clean contact.  I tend to hit down on the ball anyway, and I always seem to make perfect contact with the bottom three grooves off of hardpan.  The ball comes out low and hot with a ton of spin, but it's always useful spin.

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Originally Posted by k-troop

With a tight, firm lie, you can come clean into the ball.

In all seriousness it's just that a tight clean lie provides no impediments to clean contact.  I tend to hit down on the ball anyway, and I always seem to make perfect contact with the bottom three grooves off of hardpan.  The ball comes out low and hot with a ton of spin, but it's always useful spin.

The trajectory is low, correct?  I can do this too.  But the challenge I'm referring to is if you need to carry it any distance - with trajectory - to hit that flop type shot off of hardpan.

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Originally Posted by Beachcomber

Quote:

Originally Posted by k-troop

With a tight, firm lie, you can come clean into the ball.

In all seriousness it's just that a tight clean lie provides no impediments to clean contact.  I tend to hit down on the ball anyway, and I always seem to make perfect contact with the bottom three grooves off of hardpan.  The ball comes out low and hot with a ton of spin, but it's always useful spin.

The trajectory is low, correct?  I can do this too.  But the challenge I'm referring to is if you need to carry it any distance - with trajectory - to hit that flop type shot off of hardpan.

Nobody, maybe not even Phil, could hit a true flop from hardpan.  You have to be able to get the leading edge under the ball with an open face and the clubhead has to be ahead of the hands, which adds to whatever bounce the club has built into it. With a 60 or 64 LW you could get a high pitch with perfect contact, but I can't see anyone having much success with trying to flop from a hardpan lie.  You would almost have to have a wedge with a special grind just for that shot.

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Originally Posted by tuffluck

i dislike the short chip from thick rough on a downhill green.  you can be 10' away from the hole but unable to putt, and your chip can put you 30' away if you don't hit it perfectly.  i can't think of many other shots in golf that have absolutely no margin for error other than that one.

We have a lot of those type situations at our course, as almost all the greens slope upward front to back. Hitting over our greens is the last place you want to be. You almost have to mishit the shot in order for the ball to stay relatively close to the hole. A kind of chunked 58 degree shot is the only thing I've ever got close. Usually the best thing that is going to happen is that 30 footer you're talking about.

As far as tight lies are concerned, I remember playing a links course with tight, hard fescue grass throughout from tee to fairway to green. On the first tee the caddie took my 58 degree club out of the bag. He said, "You are not using this today."

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Originally Posted by Fourputt

Nobody, maybe not even Phil, could hit a true flop from hardpan.  You have to be able to get the leading edge under the ball with an open face and the clubhead has to be ahead of the hands, which adds to whatever bounce the club has built into it. With a 60 or 64 LW you could get a high pitch with perfect contact, but I can't see anyone having much success with trying to flop from a hardpan lie.  You would almost have to have a wedge with a special grind just for that shot.

But I can't even do this type 'float loading' of motion off of hardpan.

http://thesandtrap.com/t/39411/quickie-pitching-video#post_516421

The hardest shot in golf for me is hardpan, when you need to carry the ball any particular distance.  Say 30 yards over a bunker and land it on a short sided pin.  Very difficult shot.  I'm not talking about the trap shot where you just hit down on the ball and it comes out low and hits then stops.  That shot doesn't carry any length... And if you're required to carry the ball any distance through the air, it doesn't work.

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