Play Up

Rais­ing your game when the time is right

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - Play Your Best -

“Some­times a bunker is your friend.”

When I de­sign a hole, my goal is to give golfers of all abil­i­ties a way to play it. Of­ten I try to present three dis­tinct op­tions for the tee shot, es­ca­lat­ing in dif­fi­culty. If I can do that, I fig­ure I have nearly ev­ery­body cov­ered.

Para­mount is recog­nis­ing the path down a hole that best suits your game. The per­cep­tive player learns to iden­tify all the choices. That way, when there’s a change in weather or cir­cum­stances, you’re ready to pounce on the op­por­tu­nity to play more ag­gres­sively – or be more con­ser­va­tive, if that’s what the sit­u­a­tion calls for.

Let’s take the par-4 18th at The Lox­a­hatchee Club (il­lus­trated) in Jupiter, Florida. It’s a course I de­signed in 1984, and our team ren­o­vated in 2016.The pre­vail­ing wind is against. This sets up three ba­sic po­si­tions at­tain­able with a solid drive, depend­ing on your power. How­ever, if the wind switches to help­ing, as it fre­quently does in the win­ter months, con­sider mov­ing up a po­si­tion. It’s your chance to play the hole like a stronger player. – with max adler

IL­LUS­TRA­TION BY CHRIS O’RI­LEY

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