Big Play with Tom Patri

July 31, 2005

WHO: Ben Crane

WHAT: 25-foot birdie putt

WHERE: Par-4 17th at Brown Deer

WHEN: Final round of the U.S. Bank Championship

WHY
Despite intense criticism of his slow play from the media, fans and his fellow pros, Crane has been smart not to speed up. Having and following a preshot routine is integral to success in golf, especially on the greens, and Crane's methodical and quirky style has made him the Tour's top-ranked putter and the only American under 30, other than Tiger Woods, with two Tour wins in the last three years.

TOM'S TIP
Hit the Wall for Steady Putting

Crane does two things you must do to putt well: He keeps his eyes over the ball and his body and head rock-steady throughout the stroke. My Wall Drill will help you do that too. Hit 10-foot putts with your forehead touching a wall. Then turn around and hit 10-footers with your buttocks touching the wall. You'll likely be surprised at how much you sway during the stroke, but you'll soon learn how to stay steady with the flat stick.

Tom Patri runs T.P. Golf Services in Naples, Fla., and is a Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher.

... AND ANOTHER THING
"Greg Norman's third at the Senior British Open will inspire him to play regularly on the Champions tour. The Shark craves competition and still has a ton of game."

COLOR PHOTOCOURTESY OF CBS (CRANE, TOP) THREE COLOR PHOTOSGINA HOUSEMAN (PATRI, 3)

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)