The Niggle: 300-yard drives or six-foot putts?

Which would you prefer: The ability to hit a 300-yard drive every time? Or never miss a six-foot putt? Members of our team give their preferences.

Where do you stand? Is distance an issue for you? Or are those putts just something you can’t grasp? We debate whether we’d rather have a 300-yard drive or a six-foot putt in our locker.

For the purposes of this discussion, the rules state that you would have the ability to hit a 300-yard drive every time or never miss a six-foot putt.

James Savage, Justine Board, Tom Lenton, Eve Burton and Mark Townsend give their personal views on the matter.

JS – Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing more satisfying than connecting sweetly with the driver, watching the ball sail through the air and down the fairway. But I don’t lose sleep about hitting bad drives, it’s the three-putts from 15 feet which leave a sour taste in my mouth when I finish a round. The sound of the ball hitting the cup from six feet, whether it be for a birdie, par, or to save a double, is what it’s all about. 

JB – As a beginner, I disagree. Once I’m on the green, I feel as if I’ve made it and it’s the lottery of the approach that strikes fear in my heart. Will I hit it straight? Or will I be fighting a gorse bush? Will I connect with the ball? Or will I be playing hockey up the fairway? To hit the ball 300 yards every single time – that would be a total game-changer.
I tend to chip and putt with reasonable competence however a few wild drives can totally ruin a round TL – As an erratic category one golfer I would prefer to drive it well. I tend to chip and putt with reasonable competence however a few wild drives can totally ruin a round. That said, going in with short irons most holes could get boring and part of the fun in golf is battling it round in as little amount of shots possible from all different types of situations. 

JS – So which is it drives or putts?

TL – My head is telling me putts.

EB – I have to agree with JB. Where my game is at the moment, means that I am grateful every time I even make contact with the ball, regardless of how far or which direction it goes in. The prospect of striking it and watching it fly 300 yards in the air, towards the hole, would be truly remarkable. When you start playing golf and dream of being a great player, those are the shots you think of, not the fiddly little putts at the end.

MT – You can keep your 300-yard drives and metronomic putting strokes, if I could chip even soundly that would do me. Not up and down 60 per cent of the time. Merely being able to make some sort of consistent contact, without a shudder of electricity running through my sweating hands at the moment of impact, would be just great.


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