Rickie Fowler | Pitch It Close To Any Flag


No matter where the flag is, I like to think about making the same little backswing, with my grip light so the weight of the clubhead hinges my wrists. If I want to vary the height, I need to make only slight adjustments in my setup and release. If the pin’s in the front of the green, there’s a setup to hit the ball higher and stop it fast; if the pin’s back, there’s a setup to hit it lower and let it run. When all you have to do is adjust your setup and picture your finish position, your mind can stay clear during the shot.

This is the shot to master before you start messing around with different trajectories. It’s also what to hit when the pin is in the middle of the green. In this setup you want the ball in the middle of your stance (pin middle, ball middle — easy to remember). Set your hands slightly ahead to give the shaft some forward lean. Then just flow that heavy wedge back until your wrists start to hinge. Feel a pause, then swing through like it’s a normal impact. At the finish, I’ve released a medium amount so the clubhead is just ahead of my hands (top image, right).

When the pin is back, play the ball in the back of your stance, about even with your right instep. Here you want the most shaft lean, so bring your hands pretty far forward, close to your left thigh. I might narrow my stance to move weight to my left side, but what I really want to focus on is keeping my hands ahead of the clubhead all the way to the finish. This low, limited release makes it easy to control how far the ball will run out (top image, center).

For front hole locations position the ball in the front of your stance. Open the clubface some to add loft, bringing your hands back so they’re in line with the ball. The shaft should point straight down. In my finish, I let the clubhead release fully so it gets at least to waist high (top image, far left). This will shoot the ball up so it can settle fast. Now just make the putt.

via Golf Digest

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