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Monday, July 13, 2020

The Limerick Summary: 2020 Workday Charity Classic

Winner: Collin Morikawa

Around the wider world of golf: Marc Warren won the Austrian Open on the ET; Mardy Fish won the American Century Championship; David Lipsky won the TPC San Antonio Challenge on the Korn Ferry Tour; Joo Hyung Kim won the Gunsan Open on the KPGA; and the KLPGA's IS Dongseo Busan Open is expected to finish Monday due to bad weather. (Thanks to IC for the Korean updates.)

Collin Morikawa with the Workday trophy and a milkshake

As well as my Twofer Tuesday picks did last week, they struggled this week. I had Patrick Cantlay (T7) and Brooks Koepka (MC). I called Brooks a flier and he played like one this week -- unpredictably. Patrick put up a great Sunday round to grab that Top10 for me.
  • Top10s: 15 for 30 (6 Top5, 9 other Top10s)
  • Winners: 1 for 15 events
Collin Morikawa is now in the strange position of having more wins than missed cuts, having missed his first pro cut just two weeks ago but grabbing his second win this week. And he got that win in a shootout with Justin Thomas that went into three holes of overtime.

Viktor Hovland spiced up the battle on the front nine until two back nine bogeys ended his chances pretty early. But Morikawa and Thomas -- wow! It was back-and-forth all day with JT leading to start, Collin surging past as JT struggled in the first part of the round, then JT returning the favor in the middle, and Collin finishing strong on the final three holes (-1 VS JT's +2) to force the playoff.

And the battle didn't stop there. The high point was the two birdies on the first playoff hole -- JT from 50 feet, Collin from 24 -- and the last two holes were just a question of who would blink first.

With a second tournament at Muirfield Village this coming week, you have to figure these two guys are the favorites. But for now, Collin Morikawa has the best of all worlds with his second win, his second Limerick Summary, and God only knows how many of those legendary milkshakes.
His week was uneven at best
But when, down the stretch, he was pressed
Collin pulled it together—
The prime time pacesetter
Who never once veered from his quest.
The photo came from this page at golfchannel.com.

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Mike Malaska on Clubface Control (Video)

This brand new Malaska video teaches you a different way to think about aiming the clubface. I think you'll find it useful.



When Carl Rabito taught me the basics of the golf swing 30 years ago, although he didn't explain it in the same terms, he used the exact same drill to teach me ball control. After some instruction I would swing and, at the top of my backswing, he'd tell me to hit a draw, a fade or a straight shot.

Yes, I could do it. And no, it wasn't that hard.

But I like Malaska's description of the process. Don't think of the shaft as a baseball bat. Think of the clubface as the bat. You might be surprised how much difference a little mental change can make!

Saturday, July 11, 2020

How to Swing Like Bryson (Video)

Bryson DeChambeau uses a single-plane swing just like the legendary Moe Norman did, and Todd Graves learned from Moe. This is a great 16-minute introduction to how the swing works, simple enough that you can learn the basics from this one video.



There a dozens of swing methods you can learn.  I personally prefer a more classic swing similar to the ones taught by past teachers like Jim Flick, Manuel de la Torre and Tommy Armour. But that doesn't mean everybody has to use that swing. It's not unusual for me to get questions from players who ask if they should change their swings.

My answer is "if the swing works for you and it doesn't hurt, don't change it." You can't get better if you change swings every time you struggle.

But even if you've settled on the best swing for you, it never hurts to learn how other swing methods work. Sometimes you'll learn something that can be adapted to help you solve a problem in your existing swing. Knowledge is power!

So take a few minutes to learn how Bryson does it from this video. Todd Graves explains the main points clearly. Enjoy!

Friday, July 10, 2020

Common Par-3 Mistakes (Video)

The Meandmygolf guys did a short video on the most common mistakes made by all players (including pros) on par-3s.



Here, for your reference, is a list of the mistakes players most often make on par-3s.
  1. Poor club selection
  2. Flag hunting
  3. Misunderstanding hazards
  4. Underestimating elevation and wind
  5. Wrong tee height
  6. Ignoring your shot pattern
Note that all but tee height are strategy problems.

The last half of the video explains how to take these things into account. It's worth watching simply because correcting strategy problems is the easiest -- and fastest -- way to lower your score.

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Pretty Much What We Expected

The Ryder Cup 2020 is now the Ryder Cup 2021. What else could they do?

Ryder Cup date changed to 2021

The ripple effect is that the Presidents Cup will also be delayed a year to 2022 -- again, pretty much what we expected.

And certainly it's the right decision. The Ryder Cup is as much about the fans as about the players, and there is no way (given the current conditions) that the fans could be safely included. Postponing it was the only real choice.

You can find plenty of info about the effects of this decision online, but the most interesting to me was the European decision to freeze their points lists until January 2021. I don't guess there was anything else they could do and still give all the players a fair shake, but it's still an unforeseen side-effect.

Likewise, the LPGA's season will start as planned -- without fans and with their first major intact -- but with some uncertainties about the Marathon Classic, which said fan attendance (especially for pro-ams) was a necessity for the event to go on. Again, this sort of on-the-fly decision is pretty much what we expected for the LPGA events, which don't have the advantage of the deep pockets that the PGA Tour does.

But at least we're seeing some amount of predictability in a time of tremendous unpredictability... and that's something worth celebrating. (With masks and appropriate social distancing, of course!)

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Like Father, Like Son

Well, sort of. The PGA Tour is playing two events at the same venue starting this week, and the Korn Ferry Tour is doing the same thing.

AT&T Canyons Course

While the PGA Tour tackles Muirfield Village in Ohio, the Korn Ferry Tour is doing the same in Texas at TPC San Antonio.

This week the KFT boys are playing the TPC San Antonio Challenge at the Canyons, which will be played on TPC San Antonio’s AT&T Canyons Course. Next week they'll play the TPC San Antonio Championship at the Oaks, on the AT&T Oaks Course.

The Canyons Course is reportedly more "user-friendly" because it has more elevation changes and wider fairways than the Oaks Course. By comparison, Muirfield will be set up a bit easier for its first week and I've heard they'll be using some different tees and such to minimize course damage before the Memorial. Using two different courses at TPC San Antonio will definitely make preserving the course an easier task.

While last week's winner Will Zalatoris is taking this week off, the rest of the 156-man field can look forward to the same sort of benefits the "big boys" will have, given that they won't have to travel between the two events. (They won't get Jack's famous milkshakes though. Bummer.)

Like most of the Korn Ferry Tour events since the restart, we won't be able to watch this one on TV either. However, just so you can follow along:
With the extended season wrapping around into 2021, Tripp Isenhour said that we could easily see more than three players achieve the Battlefield Promotion. That means each of these events could end up being very important for players, so it's worth keeping up.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Twofer Tuesday: Workday Charity Open

Twofer Tuesday settles in for a leisurely fortnight at Jack's Place, as Muirfield Village hosts two events back-to-back. The first will be the Workday Charity Open.

Workday Charity Open logo

A brand-new event standing in for the John Deere Classic this year, the Workday Charity Open picks up the slack during the restart. Muirfield Village will be set up slightly easier this week -- most notably being stimped at 11 instead of 13+ -- then toughened up to its normal condition for the Memorial next week.

For the players, this must be a dream come true. Jack has a reputation for taking care of them -- the milkshakes are legendary, among other things -- and playing at Muirfield for two weeks, with no need to travel or worry about testing in yet another new venue, has to lighten the mental and emotion burdens COVID-19 has added to their prep.

With a full field of 156 players and seven of the Top10 in the OWGR, the most notable fact about the Workday may be the absence of Bryson DeChambeau. Bryson is taking his first week off since the restart, so we'll have to wait and see how the Kraken fares at Muirfield -- which should be interesting since Bryson won the Memorial back in 2018.

Of course, that means the rest of that field has a week to make their own plan of attack. So who has the best chance to make their mark at Jack's Place this week?
  • Patrick Cantlay is in the field, and he's the defending champ at the Memorial next week. He's only played one event since the restart -- he was at Travelers -- but he shot four rounds in the 60s (his lowest came on Sunday) and he's putting well. He's fresh and he's hungry, a great combination when coming to Jack's Place.
  • In an odd sort of flier move I'm going to take Brooks Koepka. His last appearance at the Memorial was a T31 back in 2017. This is not a venue he plays much and his past history there isn't great, but then he didn't pick up his first major until later in 2017 so he's a bit of an unknown this week. Still, in his two events since the restart he has four rounds in the 60s. That's gotta count for something!
GC's coverage starts Thursday at 3pm ET. This is going to be interesting since it will be the same course two weeks in a row but with slightly different setups. Will that help or hurt the contenders? We'll see!