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Never up, never in
Most amateur players are chronically incapable of getting the ball past the flag on approach shots, unless they thin it or the wind in their face suddenly drops as they strike the ball.

The same happens on the greens, which is why the old adage of 'Never up, never in' has become so widespread. If this is one of your problems, learn from Tiger, who is not only the best ball striker and score in the world but also one of the greatest putters.

Next time you're on the course, set yourself the target of not leaving the ball short of the hole when you're putting but see how many times you succeed - you'll probably be surprised at your low success rate. To make it more lively, have a private bet with yourself and fine yourself, for example, £1 or $1 for every putt you leave short, and give the money to charity.

Nothing concentrates the mind more than the possibility of losing hard earned cash. But don't do it just once; make this drill a regular part of your play and practise until you are consistently getting the ball past - or in - the hole.

©    16 - NOVEMBER 2001

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