26/3/12 Monday. Two days of competition golf this weekend again and the result is more improvement. Whilst the coaching and range practise has been very beneficial since January the game time has been the clincher in getting better at the game. Have been getting very close, playing to handicap and in to the zone of breaking it. What is stopping this is poor putting and chipping.
The Kingston round on Saturday returned 35 points. With two holes, that following good drives fell apart after the second shot, both three putt greens as well as too many chips. There was another three putt hole that was the only wipe on the scorecard as well. Scoring 1 point out of these two holes, from the 4 that should have been the result. Then at Beachport on Sunday a three hole run of bladed chip shots resulted in a double bogie, bogie, double bogie and 3 points out of the possible 6 expected were gone. No three putt greens at Beachport although the bouncy greens did result in a couple of putts jumping aside from the hole and missing. As was proved by a playing partner who putted hard at the hole every time and off a 12 handicap scored 43 points, that method is the way to get the ball in the hole.
There were some stroke playing reasons for the poor chipping and putting results, the cause though is what has to be fixed. Lack of confidence is corrupting my short game and improving the mindset is going to take some specific effort. In practice my short game and putting is not excellent but much better than the return in competition rounds. The problem is that accepting my current level of ability and not surprised when the chip or putt played is not the best, I am accepting failure. Looking at my figures in an 18 hole round there is two or three holes being destroyed by the poor short game. Approximately 85% of the holes are fine but the 15% of failure holes are all a result of the same errors.
I will not accept the failures and am working on correcting the faults. A lot of progress has been made in 2012. To sit here and know that the problem areas in my game are identified as chipping and putting. There is not much needed to improve them, hitting through the ball when chipping, and believing in my putting ability. The latter is going to come from more practice as always and continued improvement in competition results. Fairways hit is now at 50 % GIR is still low at 11%. At Kingston, 6 GIR and Beachport, 8 GIR was a significant improvement on the 2 year average percentage. The important statistic is the hole results with 47% bogies, 28% par and 20% double bogies the biggest numbers.
The chipping is going to be rectified with adding to my existing practice routine over 10 and 20 metre shots. This will be setting up on the practice fairway and hitting out to 50m distances with the 56 degree wedge. I feel that working on better accuracy is the simple key to better chipping. The putting does suffer from this failing, too many putts from 10m away from the hole end up with 3 putt results. On top of that is the realisation that with improving GIR I am going to have to keep on getting better accuracy with the mid to longer irons as well.
Talk is not what gets the improvement and today on the range this was put into effect. In the main it was all good, the error percentage was 15% from each series of balls when using the Wedge to 50m. Interesting was that the #8 iron had the same 15% error margin at 110-120m as well as the #6 iron in the 140-150m distance. The error was the same in each instance also, instead of hitting through the ball I play a short swing pulling the club across the ball and slicing to the right. Doing this on the range though in an environment with no pressure gave me the identity and cure for the fault. The putting will get a work out later in the week.
Practise is in preparation is for the two day Spring tournament at Bordertown this weekend. Having played the winter open at Bordertown the past two seasons the coming event is something that I feel will be benefited from the recent two round weekends. Playing both in the one competition again and at a course that is suited to my golfing limitations. Adding the advantage of not getting up to work at 5.30am before a 130km drive to play I should be a little fresher for the second days play. Thankyou for your time and attention, “Hit ‘em straight all”