Michelle Wie’s stop-and-start beginning to the 2019 season has added a new wrinkle ahead of this week’s first major championship, the ANA Inspiration.
Wie, who has been sidelined with lingering pain stemming from her surgically-repaired right hand for the past five weeks, showed up in Palm Springs this week sporting a completely new putting style that her coach, David Leadbetter, described as “a legal anchor.”
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“It’s very, very new,” Leadbetter told GolfChannel.com of Wie’s left-armlock, left-hand-low putting grip. “It is sort of a legal anchor, I suppose. A few guys are doing it now. She’s excited about it. She said it feels really, really good.
“It takes a variable out of the stroke. It just keeps the whole left-wrist, left-arm movement very solid. It’s a one-piece motion, which, as Michelle says, keeps the club face a lot squarer for her.”
“She has never been orthodox. She doesn’t like to conform. She’s always liked to buck the system in some way.”
Michelle Wie’s coach explains why she’s switching to a Matt Kuchar-style, “legal anchor” putting grip in her return at the ANA Inspiration. https://t.co/A4TO00DP43 pic.twitter.com/oWFzehRlYp
— Golf Central (@GolfCentral) April 2, 2019
Wie’s grip, which has been made popular by Matt Kuchar, is not her first foray into unconventional ways to putt. Her lone major victory at the U.S. Women’s Open at Pinehurst in 2014 came thanks in large part to her “table-top” putting stroke.
Michelle Wie finds putting stroke on Google, ditches the “table top” https://t.co/nu8up8tf8O pic.twitter.com/weRkwtyhLR
— The Golfer’s Corner™ (@GolfingCorner) February 21, 2017
Lately, the recently-engaged Wie has used a rotating employment of grips that ranged from conventional, cross-handed and claw grips, sometimes changing in the same round and even on the same green.
Leadbetter said he told Wie to not explain why she was changing her grips mid-round and mid-hole because “it wouldn’t make sense,” even though she enjoyed some solid results with the inconsistent grips.
“She has never been orthodox,” Leadbetter said. “She doesn’t like to conform. She’s always liked to buck the system in some way.”