Time to Go Low

Score your best ever – whether it’s 59 or 99.

Golf Digest (Malaysia) - - Contents - BY JUSTIN THOMAS

To put it mildly, I had a pretty awe­some start to 2017. Win­ning in back-to-back weeks in Hawaii, shoot­ing a 59 in the first round of the Sony Open, you couldn’t ask for a hap­pier new year. I’m play­ing well for a lot of rea­sons. First, it’s con­fi­dence. I don’t get riled as much when I bo­gey a hole. I know I can get the stroke back. Sec­ond, I’ve been work­ing hard on my game, par­tic­u­larly from 150 yards and in. Now I’m re­ally tak­ing ad­van­tage of hit­ting my tee shots as far as I do. When I stand over a full short-iron shot, a pitch, a chip, even a longer putt, I feel like I’m ei­ther go­ing to get it close or knock it in. It’s a great feel­ing to have, be­lieve me. If you’d like to im­prove your scor­ing, try some of the ad­just­ments I’ve made, as well as some strate­gies I’ve learned over the past few years. Here’s your first tip: When hit­ting a full short-iron shot, you might be able to fly a 9-iron 150 yards—if it’s down­hill, down­wind and you blade it—but you’re go­ing to be a lot bet­ter from that dis­tance if you take your 8-iron, make a smooth swing, and fo­cus on hit­ting the ball solidly. Turn the page for more scor­ing tips.

edited by ron kaspriske Pho­to­graphs by Wal­ter Iooss Jr. april 2017

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