Bumper Golf

How to turn this awk­ward lie into an easy par

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - | Play Your Best David Leadbetter -

nfor­tu­nately, golf isn’t al­ways fair. Some­times you hit a good shot into a green, but the ball re­leases and nes­tles up against the higher grass sur­round­ing the fringe. Now what do you do? First, don’t freak out. This shot is not as tough as it looks. Fol­low these steps to get your ball up and down us­ing what we call the bel­lied wedge.

UDavid Lead­bet­ter

Take your sand wedge and grip it like you do your put­ter. When you swing, your goal is to strike the belly of the ball with the lead­ing edge of the club­face. That will get the ball rolling like you putted it.

At ad­dress, hold the shaft more up­right than nor­mal, with the club’s heel higher than the toe. This will help the club­head slide through the longer grass with­out get­ting stuck or twist­ing shut.

As you get ready to swing, the lead­ing edge should rest on the tips of the tallest blades of grass, in line with the ball’s equa­tor. This pre-sets the club on a clear path back and through.

Swing the club smoothly, keep­ing your fol­low-through short. The ball will come off with a lot of over­spin, so a soft stroke will pro­duce plenty of roll. If you al­low for that, it’s a very pre­dictable shot.

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