Best 2017 results
Won Honda Classic, T3 Safeway Open.
Cobra King PUR V-Grind (52°, 56°, 60°), with True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 shafts.
How he does it
The secret of any good bunker player is they rely on the same basic set of fundamentals for getting out of the sand and knocking their ball close every time.
Rickie Fowier’s bunker play improved dramatically in 2017. He went from a sand save percentage of 52.03 in 2016 and ranked 71st to leading the stat category this year.
Fowler’s approach is simple and textbook. He sets up with an open clubface and wide open stance with the ball forward in his stance. As he prepares to play the shot, he hovers the clubhead above where he wants it to enter the sand during the swing.
The big difference between amateurs and good bunker players like Fowler occurs in the backswing. A lot of amateurs make a short, fast stabbing swing at the ball, which is unlikely to get the ball out of the sand, let alone close to the flag. Fowler ensures he makes a long, smooth backswing before swinging down into the sand, letting the clubhead slide under the ball. And the key to the ball flying high out of the sand is to complete your follow-though, keeping the clubface open (or pointing skyward).