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Reach for the sky
Handicap golfers are sick of hearing Tour pros say that the standard bunker splash shot is one of the easiest in the game. It is, but it nevertheless requires a different technique to almost every other shot you will play.

If escape from sand traps is your Achilles heel, try this simple recipe. Don't worry about standing 'open' to your target - set up as you would normally. Address the sand about 1-2 inches behind the ball (without touching it with your club), take a three-quarter swing and make sure to hit the sand first.

But now the important bit - throughout the hitting area drive the back of your left hand through and up towards the sky. In other words, don't let your hands roll over and release in the way they would for most full shots from grass or a tee peg.

This movement of keeping the back of your left hand (for right-handed players) pointing to the sky does two things. First, it holds the clubface 'open' throughout, an essential part of sliding the clubhead under the ball. Second, it encourages you to finish with your hands high, and one of the greatest failings of amateur players in bunkers is to 'quit' on the shot and not finish properly.



©    2 - JUNE 2003



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