Big Play

April 13, 2008

WHO
Lorena Ochoa

WHAT
130-yard punch shot to 18 feet

WHERE
386-yard, par-4 15th hole at Mission Hills

WHEN
Final round of the Kraft Nabisco Championship

WHY
Watching Ochoa reminds me of a tilting plane whose wings scrape the runway while landing but that somehow safely reaches the terminal. Ochoa makes an unorthodox move at the top—she ducks her head and tilts it backward—that should make her shank or push the ball right. But she has learned to maneuver the clubface so it's square at impact, as she did at 15, where she carved her approach out of the rough, under a tree and through a tiny opening in front of the green.

Unless you're as talented as Ochoa, you can't hit solid shots without a square eye line at impact. To make sure you're square, put two parallel lines of tape with a thin slit between them on a pair of glasses. Create a colored target line under the ball. If your eye line remains square, you'll see the entire target line (YES) through the slit all the way to impact.

YES
NO

John Elliott teaches at Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club in Ocala, Fla.

JOHN'S TIP
Tape Your Glasses to Square Your Eyes

...AND ANOTHER THING

"Annika Sorenstam's swing isn't nearly as good as it was before she was injured. Now she holds on way too long through impact."

GOLF MAGAZINE TOP 100 TEACHERS POLL

On any given week, whom would you pick to win his or her respective event?

Lorena Ochoa 33%

Tiger Woods 67%

"Ochoa has won less than 20% of her starts while Tiger has won nearly 30%."
--KEITH LYFORD, AUBURN COUNTRY CLUB

PHOTOCOURTESY OF CBS (OCHOA) PHOTOERICK W. RASCO (BACKGROUND) TWO PHOTOSCARLOS M. SAAVEDRA (ELLIOTT) TWO PHOTOSCARLOS M. SAAVEDRA (CLUB) PHOTOROBERT BECK (WOODS)

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)