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Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Column: Reviewing the yr primarily based on each membership within the bag

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The worth of 1 shot was a spot in historical past, one other was price $15 million within the financial institution. One drive launched a younger Scotsman on the world stage, one fairway metallic helped to make a younger American a serious champion.

All have been photographs that formed the yr in golf.

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What follows is a evaluation primarily based on each membership within the bag. And in perpetual honor of Arnold Palmer and his beloved shootout at Bay Hill, this bag is not restricted to 14 golf equipment:

DRIVER

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Bryson DeChambeau will get consideration for slicing off a lot of the lake on the par-5 sixth gap at Bay Hill, and thrusting each arms within the air like a strongman. The most effective shot hit with a driver was three weeks later on the WGC-Dell Match Play.

Robert MacIntrye of Scotland got here to the 371-yard 18th gap at Austin Nation Membership needing to win the opening to advance out of group play. He hit a bullet onto the inexperienced 3 ft from the cup, proper next to the feet of Dustin Johnson’s caddie.

3-WOOD

Daniel Berger was tied for the lead on the par-5 18th of the AT&T Pebble Seaside Professional-Am when he laced a 3-wood onto the inexperienced to 30 ft. He holed the eagle putt for a two-shot victory and was on his means. By the tip of his yr, Berger was a Ryder Cup participant.

7-WOOD

Nelly Korda received her first main and moved to No. 1 on the earth with a strong efficiency within the KPMG Ladies’s PGA Championship. And that energy was by no means extra evident than on the par-5 third gap at Atlanta Athletic Membership. She hit 7-wood that stopped a foot away for eagle that gave Korda the lead for good.

3-IRON

Harris English was one shot behind on the downhill, par-5 closing gap at Kapalua within the season-opening Sentry Match of Champions. From a downhill lie, he hit 3-iron from 268 yards to 10 ft. That arrange his birdie to tie Joaquin Niemann, and English beat him with a birdie on the primary further gap.

English may be one of the best reminder that one of the best ways to lift one’s profile is by successful. He received twice this yr and was a part of his first Ryder Cup staff.

4-IRON

Justin Thomas has a brief historical past of huge photographs on par 5s, and this was a giant stage. Thomas and Jordan Spieth have been all sq. in opposition to Viktor Hovland and Bernd Wiesberger in Saturday foursomes on the Ryder Cup. On the 569-yard sixteenth gap, Thomas hit 4-iron to 8 feet that Spieth transformed for birdie, they usually went on to a 2-up victory.

5-IRON

The Masters was broad open on Saturday afternoon when Hideki Matsuyama hit 5-iron that by no means left the trail of the flag, landed softly and rolled out to five ft for eagle. That gave him the lead for the primary time, and it began an eagle-birdie-birdie run that despatched him to a four-shot lead and in the end a inexperienced jacket.

6-IRON

Patrick Cantlay had a one-shot lead over Jon Rahm enjoying the par-5 18th gap at East Lake with a minimum of $15 million using on the result. From the green, he smoked a 6-iron from 218 yards to 12 ft — the closest of anybody all day on the Tour Championship — that arrange birdie to turn into the FedEx Cup champion.

7-IRON

Sam Burns twice did not convert 54-hole leads in his pursuit of his first PGA Tour victory. His final problem on the Valspar Championship was the sixteenth gap. From 186 yards, he had a 6-iron till caddie Travis Perkins felt the wind die and known as him off. Burns as a substitute hammered 7-iron to 18 ft for birdie, sending him to his first title.

8-IRON

Collin Morikawa was coming off two birdies and was within the lead on the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai when he discovered a bunker off the tee. With an 8-iron, he hit a high fade to form it across the water to 12 ft. That arrange a par that stored up his momentum, and he completed off a victory that made him the primary American to turn into the European Tour’s No. 1 participant.

9-IRON

Sergio Garcia already had overwhelmed Lee Westwood within the opening session of the Match Play after which confronted him in a playoff two days later to attempt to win the group. On the 161-yard fourth gap, Garcia hit 9-iron simply past the pin and it trickled again into the cup for an ace. That prompted Westwood to say: “Effectively, 28 years on tour and I believed I had seen every little thing. I hadn’t!”

PITCHING WEDGE

DeChambeau is swinging quicker and hitting it farther, and it is not simply the driving force. On the par-3 eighth gap at Torrey Pines within the ultimate spherical of the U.S. Open, he hit pitching wedge from 175 yards, barely uphill at sea stage, that got here within inches of falling for a hole-in-one. The faucet-in birdie gave him the lead for the primary time. In the end, he could not maintain on.

GAP WEDGE

Max Homa’s hopes of successful at Riviera appeared misplaced when his tee shot on No. 10 in a playoff settled on the base of a tree, whereas Tony Finau was 7 ft away for birdie. Homa hooded a niche wedge to get some spin, someway bumped it up the hill to the entrance of the inexperienced and escaped with par to remain within the playoff. He received with a par on the subsequent gap. Together with the unimaginable shot, this was among the many feel-good wins of the yr — an LA child, successful at Riviera, getting the trophy from Tiger Woods. “I do not know if I can do something cooler in golf than this,” he stated.

52-DEGREE WEDGE

The return of Spieth this yr additionally introduced again his short-game magic, none extra memorable than the opening foursomes session with Thomas on the Ryder Cup. The ball was buried in deep grass on the aspect of a steep slope left of the par-3 seventeenth. Spieth opened the face of a 52-degree wedge and swung so onerous that the ball shot straight up within the air, and his momentum despatched him racing down the hill to the sting of Lake Michigan. The ball got here down 6 ft away. Thomas missed the par putt. Regardless of. It was the shot everybody wished to see that day.

SAND WEDGE

Xander Schauffele had the Tokyo Olympics in thoughts all summer season, and he got here to the ultimate gap of Kasumigaseki Nation Membership with a one-shot lead. He hit into the bushes on the appropriate and had no alternative however to chip again to the green. From 98 yards, he hit sand wedge about 15 ft behind the opening and watched it spin again to 4 ft. He made the par for the gold medal.

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LOB WEDGE

Phil Mickelson had a one-shot lead within the ultimate spherical of the PGA Championship when he put his tee within the entrance bunker on the par-3 fifth gap at Kiawah Island. All the time expert with a lob wedge, he blasted out completely and it trickled into the cup for a birdie shock, widening his lead and sending the 50-year-old into the file e book as golf’s oldest main champion.

PUTTER

The clinching birdie putt for Jon Rahm within the U.S. Open was the 18-footer on the ultimate gap at Torrey Pines. The successful putt? That may have been on the opening earlier than. Rahm was one shot behind Louis Oosthuizen when he rolled in a sharp-breaking 25-foot birdie putt to tie for the lead. Behind him, Oosthuizen bogeyed the seventeenth and Rahm was on his means.





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