Learn to successfully navigate deep rough pitch shots by properly utilizing the bounce of your wedge
Locating your ball in thick, greenside rough is, well, rough. You’ll see plenty of evidence of thick rough this week at Shinnecock for the U.S. Open and some great examples of how to get out of it.
Deep rough is EXTREMELY frustrating, however, this is isn’t the end of the world — or your round. Especially if you know how to play this type of pitch shot correctly, which starts by viewing it more like a bunker shot and using one, very important aspect of your wedge to your aid: bounce.
We’ve previously discussed bounce but as a quick refresher, it’s the angle formed between the leading edge of the clubface and the lowest point of its sole.
In bunkers, bounce helps the club from digging too deeply into the sand. That same thought applies to deep rough, helping the wedge slide better through the heavy grass as opposed to dig.
Setup for this shot varies from a typical pitch shot. Your stance should be more open, or left of the target for right-handed golfers, and the face of the club should lie slightly more open at address to encourage effective use of the bounce.
First thing’s first: Simply getting the ball onto the greenis the main goal here, so forget trying to thread the needle to a tight pin and realize the best play may be to go for the middle of the green.
Since the deep rough can drastically slow the club down through the strike, the swing for these shots should harness enough force to help get the ball up and out of the thick grass. It can also help to think about keeping your hands close to your chest as you follow through, which will help maintain the club’s loft and use of the bounce through impact.
VIDEO: Deep Rough Pitch Shots
To help you add this shot to your bag, GOLFTEC’s Nick Clearwater, Zach Lambeck and Patrick Nuber illustrate how to successfully get out of deep rough by using the above technique, a little patience and a lot of practice.
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