Big Play: Justin Rose's iron control on Sunday at WGC-Cadillac Championship

Tuesday March 13th, 2012
Justin Rose's low, accurate irons helped him earn his first WGC title at Doral.
David Walberg / SI

WHO: Justin Rose
WHAT: A 135-yard 52-degree wedge to five feet for a birdie
WHERE: 460-yard par-4 14th hole at Doral
WHEN: Final round of the WGC-Cadillac Championship
 
Justin has total control of his irons and hits a lot of greens in regulation. That's why he enjoys playing harder courses, including Doral, which place a premium on precision irons. Last week, the wind was always blowing, so most shots were either into the wind, downwind or cross-wind. Playing in the wind is natural for European tour veterans like Justin, because there's so much wind on the continent.
 
Justin usually keeps his ball-flight low with irons by using a somewhat abbreviated follow-through. Coming down, he quickly moves onto his left side, rotates his torso and doesn't let the club roll over much in the through swing. That assures the ball will take off with a lower-than-normal trajectory and without too much spin.
 
THE DRILL: Learn to flight the ball with an abbreviated follow-through by using a mid or high iron at practice. The iron should be one club more than you'd normally use to hit a certain distance. For example, if your target is 140 yards away and you normally hit your six-iron 140 yards, then use a five-iron for this drill.
 
Imagine there's a big tree just ahead of and a bit to the left of your lead leg. The imaginary tree would be directly where your club would travel near the top of the follow-through. Now hit shots with a slightly narrower than normal stance and stand a bit closer than normal to the ball. Also, try to really hit the ball hard. But you have to abbreviate the follow-through to avoid hitting the imaginary tree. You'll have to engage your body's core to make this hard-but-short swing while stopping the shaft fairly quickly after impact.

Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher Jon Tattersall is a co-founder of Golf Performance Partners in Atlanta.

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