Keegan Bradley's win this past weekend in the PGA Championship was impressive on many levels. Of course he hit some clutch shots, but the shots he chose were impressive as well.
Choose a smart game plan and stick to it
Despite the par-4 18th being roughly 480 yards, each time Bradley played it (including the final playoff hole) he teed off with a club he knew would get him into the all important short grass of the fairway, his hybrid. The hybrid was the club he could most easily draw around the corner, and also wasn't quite enough club to reach the fairway bunkers on the right. He knew how important the approach shot was and that hitting it from the fairway bunkers or the rough would not work. That approach is long and over water to a firm green. A longer shot from the short grass of the fairway will still sit better than one from a shorter distance in the rough. And of course the shot can be controlled better from the short grass, helping to reduce the possibility of a miss-hit which might end up short in the water.
Smart planning by Bradley is a big of the reason why he played the last three holes of the PGA Championship in -1, while the rest of the field flamed out with bogeys, doubles and worse. Bradley's game plan and perfect execution on those final holes is what made the difference and enabled Bradley to win his first major.
The next time you play golf, think the holes and course layout through. Make a game plan for each hole which will reduce the possibility of errors, missed fairways and missed greens. Stick to the plan and concentrate on executing it.