Phil Mickelson did not automatically qualify for the Ryder Cup on points, but he is a strong favorite for a captain’s pick. Jim Furyk would obviously feel better seeing some great play from Mickelson during the FedEx Cup Playoffs and he must be happy with what he is seeing through the first two rounds of The Northern Trust.
Phil has put himself into the mix through the first two rounds.
One of the momentum builders happened during the first round on the 10th hole where his approach shot ended up just off the green. Mickelson found himself in very thick rough less than a yard off the green with 23 feet of green to work with.
Leave it to Phil to pull the pin and hole it.
Let’s take a look at how he did it.
The Stab & Run
This is a perfect variation of the bump-and-run for similar lies is heavy greenside rough.
- After you assess the thickness of the rough and determine it is too thick for a traditional bump-and-run chip, take one club higher in loft than you would normally use if the lie was in the fringe.
- Next, play the ball just inside of your back foot. Moving the ball extremely far back in the stance ensures that the rough will not impact the clubhead too dramatically while also delofting the playing loft of the club.
- Once the stance is taken, choke down on the club slightly and add pressure to the front leg. Choking down gives us more control of the clubhead as it battles the rough. Presetting pressure to the lead side sets a predetermined steep angle of attack for ball-first contact.
- Make a few practice swings and notice how the rough interacts with the club. Feel how the club will stop once it comes in steeply. That is the stabbing motion you are looking for.
Phil had almost not follow-through and allowed the club to stop at impact. Trust your setup. When played correctly, the ball will pop out and roll out like a putt.