Publish date:

Big Play

Who: TomWatson

What: Wedge-outfrom a fairway bunker

Where: 449-yardpar-4 18th hole at Muirfield

When: Final roundof the Senior British Open

Why

There are sixreasons why Watson is the greatest links player in history: 1) He embraces badweather; 2) he knows that even a great shot can end up dead, so he was unfazedat 18 when he left his first bunker shot, which was next to a wall, in thesand; 3) his steep swing nips the ball clean, a key for hard turf and thickrough; 4) he plays by feel more than by numbers; 5) he has a commanding, briskpace, so after his first sand shot he took only 12 seconds to wedge his ballback to the fairway; and 6) his rap putting stroke is perfect for slow, hillygreens.

Mitchell's Tip

Try Tom Watson'sPostshot Routine

Watson hitsquickly but then diligently observes every shot--during practice and on thecourse--until the ball stops rolling. That lets him evaluate what worked orwhat didn't and then adjust for the next shot. Emulate Watson by not wastingtime before swinging. It's better to pose at the finish, process what happenedand then plan ahead for the next shot.

Spearman teachesat Manhattan Woods Golf Club in West Nyack, N.Y.

...AND ANOTHERTHING

"It wouldn'tsurprise me if Phil Mickelson ends his season after the PGA and skips the FedExCup. Playing with a wrist injury could end a career."

PRO OR CON?

What has becomecommon in women's golf is now a trend in the men's game: Teenage boys areskipping college and turning pro. Their odds on immediate success on Tour arelong--hundreds of kids can go low from time to time, but you have to be specialto shoot a score four days in a row. Here are five teenagers who recentlyturned pro or are about to turn pro, and their prospects of success.

[This articlecontains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine or PDF.]


GOLF MAGAZINE TOP 100
TEACHERS POLL

If Mike Weir(18th) fails to qualify for the Presidents Cup, should Gary Player pick him forthe team?

Yes ...51%

No ...49%

"ThePresidents Cup in Canada without Weir would be like the NHL All-Star Game inCanada without Gretzky."
--STEVE BOSDOSH, MEMBERS CLUB AT FOUR STREAMS

EIGHT PHOTOS

COURTESY OF ABC (WATSON); ERICK W. RASCO; STAN BADZ/PGA TOUR/WIREIMAGE.COM (DAY); RICHARD HEATHCOTE/GETTY IMAGES (FINAU, FISHER); MARCO GARCIA/WIREIMAGE.COM (FUJIKAWA); FRED VUICH (MCILROY); ROBERT BECK (WEIR)

PHOTO

ERICK W. RASCO

Watch until yourball stops rolling