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Saturday, October 27, 2012

Is It Better to Be Hot and Not Sticky?

Kuala Lumpur is hot AND sticky, so the leaders are stuck together so tight you can barely tell 'em apart!

As I'm writing this, Tiger is two back of Bo Van Pelt's lead at -16. Bo is -9 after 12 holes while Tiger's -5 after 9 holes. There are 10 players within 4 shots and 15 within 5 shots. The scoring is insane, as there are a huge number of players who are -5, -6, and -7 for the day.

The interesting thing to me is that both Tiger and Bo finally seem to be hitting on all cylinders. It's not that they played badly in the earlier rounds; they just hadn't looked particularly sharp. That looks to be changing today. (Of course, Saturday in Kuala Lumpur is late Friday in the US.)

By comparison, the LPGA is in Yang Mei, Taiwan where it appears to be pretty hot -- though not nearly as hot as Kuala Lumpur -- but definitely NOT sticky. And, perhaps understandably, the field isn't sticking together either.

As it stands while I'm writing, Suzann Pettersen (-12), Inbee Park (-11), and Yani Tseng (-11) are separating themselves from the field in the third round. The news here is that Yani looks to be on her way to three sub-70 rounds for the first time in months.

It looks like the stars on both tours were ready for a little action... but perhaps the PGA Tour pros wanted it a bit more. Tiger had said earlier in the week that, given the conditions and if the course were set up with reasonable pins, someone -- maybe several someones -- might break 60. Bo is officially on 59 watch -- he needs to get to -11 to do that -- and unless his game deserts him, that may be the big news by the time you read this.

And if Bo does it, he may prove that being sticky ain't so bad after all.


  1. Hi Mike,

    So there you go, I finally managed to see a living legend tee-off.

    I also saw Dufner and saw the famous waggle - but major question here is the swing supposed to be wristy like his waggle? It takes a lot of confidence to start the swing after the waggle, I must say.

    Also saw Carl Petterson teeing off, he was confidently hitting/tapping on top of the ball to get the right tee height. He also has this quasi-sway to the right when he starts his backswing. Why does he do that?

    A lot of fun to see the pros even though It was hot and humid, a good learning experience!

  2. Wow, Ramzi. Lots of questions!

    First, the swing should NOT be wristy like the waggle. Hogan was pretty clear in his book Five Lessons: The hands and arms shouldn't do anything during the swing but hang on to the club. The trick with a Hogan-style waggle as described on pages 66 and 67 of my copy -- and this isn't made clear most of the time -- is that the waggle is a specific set of moves, but it isn't identical each time. I'll do a post about it for Tuesday.

    As for Carl, that isn't a sway. He's moving behind the ball -- a move that Carl Rabito, the PGA teaching pro who taught me, also teaches. I generally don't teach it because I think you either do it naturally when you try to stay steady over the ball or you end up with a full-blown sway. I found a YouTube video by PGA teaching pro Brian Manzella that demonstrates it. It's in the first couple of minutes:

    Big Play: Carl Pettersson's Unconventional Moves

    I may do a post on this as well, since it probably confuses a lot of players who see it.

    I'm glad you enjoyed yourself. Things always look different in person than they do on TV!