The Chip and Run Shot

By: Jonathon Hardcastle

Golf is a game enjoyed by many the world over. It's a game that requires dedication, determination, and above all practice. In golf, practice helps build routine, which is necessary to establish power in your drive, through consistent iron play to finesse on the putting surface. But there also lies an awkward area, just off the fringe of the green, that can be unpredictable and potentially card wrecking. Furthermore, over half your strokes ill inevitably be counted around the green, so it is crucial to tighten up where it really matters.

The fact is you can smash the ball for 300 yards on a par 4 and still walk away with a 7. And it's not that difficult either. Overshoot the green, putt beyond the hole, land in the bunker - there are plenty dangers lying in wait of those who've lost their concentration. As the saying goes, 'drive for show and putt for dough'. If you're greenside play isn't up to scratch, you can forget about racking up a good score. It really is as simple as that. And this doesn't just mean putting: it also covers consistency in approach from short range, and in achieving this, the chip and run shot could be a very valuable asset.

If your ball is lying in light rough or on the fairway short of the green, you'll be facing a tough decision. You can't putt the ball because you'll have no way of gauging the resistance of the rough before you reach the green. You can't chip the ball because you need more control than that.

The solution? Chip and run. Take a middle to lower iron out of your bag. Your club choice should reflect the severity of the rough, so for example if you're in thick stuff a 9 or pitching wedge is the club to go for, but if your practically on the surface you might even like to try a 3-wood. Hold the club as normal and conduct a normal putting stroke through the ball, with the club you've chosen. Simply putt with the same weight as normal, at the same rhythm. With any luck the ball should pop up and trundle nicely towards the hole. This lifts the ball over the rough but keeps it close enough to the surface to give you the control you need for that added finesse around the putting surface.

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