A STRIKING DIFFERENCE
How to make crisp contact from tight lies
airways are cut shorter these days with modern agronomy. The ball doesn’t sit up as much, so the challenge is to make solid contact on a firm, tight lie. Tour players, like Rickie Fowler ( above), face these lies every week. How do you adjust for a shot if there’s no cushion under the ball? My method is to play
Fit about an inch further back than normal and make sure I’m descending a little more steeply on the downswing. That helps me strike the ball first, taking a divot just after. You still might catch it a little thin, making the ball fly lower and with less spin, but that’s not so bad. I sometimes play for it to come out thin. To get a feel for this shot, practise short pitches first and then graduate to longer clubs once you start to hit the ball solidly. Don’t get discouraged. Even the pros would prefer to have the ball sitting up higher, especially in wet conditions. But maintenance practices are changing, so firm, tight lies are here to stay.