Our man Paul Adams tries to point student Randy in the right direction but the latter’s chronic slice is proving an obstacle. *Photo by Nicola Muirhead
Our man Paul Adams tries to point student Randy in the right direction but the latter’s chronic slice is proving an obstacle. *Photo by Nicola Muirhead

Randy, an employee at Tucker’s Point, and a newcomer to golf, was set a challenge by the club’s pro Paul Adams.

It was to learn to play the game in 20 hours, compete in the Bacardi National Par 3 on January 17-18, to score respectably and to qualify for the World Par 3 Championship in March. So with the challenge set, what’s Randy been working on? 

Our topic this week was how the full swing was going as Randy had mentioned that he was not hitting the ball that well. 

A few adjustments in the swing were required.

The key points were the length of the swing, in that Randy continued to rotate and let his arms fold into his body causing the club to point towards the ground.

This meant the swing was out of control and is probably the most destructive of faults that you can have.

I impressed on Randy how important it was to eliminate this. 

So to help shorten the swing we also worked on ‘Resistance’, which is the idea of holding the legs more still as you swing back, which in turn, hopefully would shorten the swing — no bad thing for Randy.

So these adjustments were made and the ball was hit slightly better, but the ball seemed to still be going very high and to the right.

This can mean only one thing, the club face is pointing to the right. 

I checked his grip and aim and both seemed fine, so why was the ball still going to the right? 

The only issue really was the grip pressure, very tight and not feeling confident, so Randy will have to work on feeling more relaxed and confident.

There is only really a week away from the Bacardi National Par 3 and the realization is that we have not prepared as well as I had hoped.

Christmas and vacations have really taken their toll on our time spent together and we will really have to buckle down to get to the level we had hoped.

We will continue to focus on chipping and putting and my hope is that this will carry us though.

Randy’s point of view

My slice has the power to cut my goals down to nothing. Backswing, hands, stance, hips, open face, closed face — all of this is getting to be too much.

But it’s mostly the backswing I have to think about. 

Straight back, not too far, not too hard, accelerate. These words are peppering me in the coaching sessions. 

I think it’s a great challenge though. Some days I have it spot-on, and some days it’s awful, but overall what a marvellous frustrating addiction. 

The good days encourage me want to get back and play again, and the bad days motivate me to get back on the horse and practice again. I can see why so many people play golf and play often! 

The Golf Challenge is a weekly column. Paul Adams is director of golf at Tucker’s Point.