Posts Tagged ‘Tom Watson’

Junior Golf: 5 Reasons To Watch The Open Championship

This Wednesday Waggle is a quick one that is hopefully going to rev up your level of excitement about The Open Championship which begins tomorrow, 12:30am, central time, Thursday morning.

img_0102-1

Photocredit:Golf Digest

Here are 5 compelling reasons to watch:
It has become the World Championship of Golf (men’s golf). One of the Golf Channel announcers mentioned that basically every top golfer in the world puts The Open Championship on his calendar. There you go!
The scenery and courses are so different than most of those here in the U.S. Genuine links courses have the same grass from tee to green, just cut to differing lengths. The rolling fairways and greens, deep pot bunkers, tough rough, gorse and other trees and shrubs we rarely see add to the intrigue and excitement. Beautiful!
The weather! Oh, man! Summer in the British Isles means everything from sunny and 70-degrees to windy, rainy and 50-degrees. And play goes on as long as the course is playable and the wind isn’t blowing a stationary ball all over the place. Davis Love III was once asked, “What is the most layers of clothing you have ever worn during a tournament?” His reply, “That’s easy, 5 layers. It was the 198x, (I don’t recall the exact year) British Open!” Yes, fans love it, players really don’t care for it, but they have no choice but to accept it.
The shotmaking! Links golf is different from the style of golf we play in the U.S. Here we mostly shoot, fly the ball in the air, to a target and try to get the ball to stop as close to it as possible, with not much rollout. I believe it was 5-time Open Championship winner Tom Watson who said, “Links golf begins when the ball hits the ground.” What does this mean? Weather and course design are friendly to a lower ball flight and the players with the best imagination, creativity and visualization and execution, of course, can understand how to find the spot to land the ball so that it rolls, sometimes a very long way, to get in a proper position for the next shot. You roll your ball to the desired position, rather than fly it. Target golf in Scotland needs soft greens and light winds. You will see shots this week that will truly amaze you at the talent level of these players. Absolutely fascinating!
The fans. The British fans have a reference and respect for golf that is deep and profound. Yes, they would like one of their guys to win, but they appreciate proper shotmaking on their golf courses and they give props to those who make them. 2 of the most beloved, by the British fans, Open Champions, are Americans Arnold Palmer and Tom Watson. There is no adequate measure of the love and respect these great men receive from this audience. We can learn from this wonderful attitude of respect for the game and those who play it.

image

Photocredit:Royalbirkdale2017open.com

OK, that’s enough for now. Hopefully this has you fired up for that start of play at 12:30am, central time, tonight, on The Golf Channel. Double-check the TiVo.

See you on #1 tee ready to play some creative shots… Sam

 

Junior Golf: 3 Tips For Lower Scores In Bad Weather

 

In this Wednesday Waggle we will offer 3 mental postures or tips for parents to share with your junior golfers. These will help your daughter/son have an opportunity to shoot lower scores in bad weather. (Dufner photo golfdigest.com)img_0102

Few if any golfers enjoy playing in terrible conditions. It is not fun, it takes every golfer out of their normal playing/pre-shot routine and it’s more challenging to shoot a decent score. There are players who find success in nasty weather. Let’s look at how they do it.

Last weekend during the PGA Genesis event at Riviera Country Club, former World #1 David Duval was asked, “How do you mentally prepare to play in this? The weather is terrible.” The host was referring to the rain and 25 mph winds battering the course and players. To paraphrase David’s response: “There are several things you need to do mentally. 1st, understand that everybody is playing in it, so it impacts the whole field. 2nd, there are players who really dislike these conditions and they are not going to play very well. 3rd, there are players who embrace these conditions and play better during bad weather than nearly everyone else. They gain strokes on the field. This weather is an excellent opportunity to move up in the standings for players who can take a breath and embrace tough playing conditions. In fact, there are some good scores out there right now.” Yes, there were some players shooting 3,4,5-under par in ugly weather.

image

Hall of Fame member and 8 time major champion Tom Watson won the British Open, now The Open Championship, 5 times. After Arnold Palmer, Tom is probably the American golfer that is most loved by the British golf fans. When asked why Tom was so successful playing in the notorious and unpredictable British summer weather, 2 main reasons were offered. His ball flight was lower and thus less affected by the elements. And he was able to totally embrace the weather. It has often been said that when it was cold, windy and rainy, you couldn’t tell it by Tom Watson’s attitude. He looked like he was enjoying a sunny 75-degree day! There ya go! Attitude, attitude, attitude…positive attitude! (Tom Watson photo sporting news)

Golf is certainly a mental game and there is always another opportunity to test your daughter’s mental strengths. Ugly weather is one of those moments. She will play tournaments in cold, wet and windy conditions and these 3 tips can help her shoot a better score.

See you on #1 tee mentally ready… Sam

 

 

%d bloggers like this: