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US Open Rough

June 24, 2010 - Steve Anderson

As always, it was quite a US Open at Pebble Beach this year and it came down to the last hole to determine a winner.  More that the solid play by the eventual winner was the struggle by the game's greatest players to handle the tight fairways, fast greens and long rough.  Even 3 of the world's top 10 couldn't keep it under par and many times even they looked like your average country club player.

One of the shots they did have some luck with however was chipping out of the long rough.  The US Open usually lets their rough around the green grow to 5 inches or more, much longer than the usual standard, and knowing how to play out of rough this long can help your game whenever you're faced with such a lie.

If you're 3-4 yards off the green and your ball is sitting in long rough, try the following.  Take your normal chipping stance with your feet 45 degrees open and 90% of your weight on your forward leg and the ball back in your stance off your back toe.  But this time, move the ball even further back so it 2-3 inches outside your back foot actually.  With the ball this far back it will naturally make your swing a bit more vertical or up and down so less grass will get in between your club face and the ball at impact.  Get a bit more hinging action during your backswing then come down sharply into the back of the ball without much follow through.  Use your SW as this club has 'bounce' and will keep the club from digging into the ground too much.  Your ball will pop out cleanly and stop pretty quickly with just a little roll.

So, when the grass gets longer and longer play the ball back farther and farther to give you the vertical swing to ensure clean contact.


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