Escape almost any sloppy condition
Wet lie? Here’s how to play it (and when to drop)
Everybody has seen the tour player roll up his pant legs and get down into the hazard to try to play a ball that’s partially submerged.
Luckily, most situations aren’t quite that dire — but you do need to know how to account for a wet, muddy lie around the green. If you don’t, you’re going to hit more than your share of fat or bladed shots.
The secret? Don’t let the leading edge of your sand wedge get caught up in the muck, says short-game guru and 50 Best Teacher Stan Utley.
“Out of fear, a lot of players swing too easy, which will usually cause you to duff it,” says Utley. “From these lies, you should be thinking about playing a standard bunker shot.”
To do it, you need to unhinge your wrists aggressively on the downswing while keeping your right palm pointed upward — the key to keeping the bounce on the bottom of the club aimed at the ground. If you swing too slowly or let your wrists turn over, you’ll catch the leading edge in that wet muck and you’ll probably move the ball ten feet.
The feel? Like you’re skipping a rock across the surface of a pond.
Speaking of wet, how deep is too deep when the ball is partially submerged in water? If a quarter of the ball is above the surface, it’s possible to get it out–but you’re going to get wet. Wear rain gear, and swing hard.