A Taste of Competition
Posted Aug 04 2009, 06:28 PM by Cathy Erickson
When it comes to golf, I think it's hard to stop your competitive juices from flowing. Even people that are say they are on the golf course "for the enjoyment of the game" have to feel some sense of challenge and determination out there, even if it's just beating a low score, having less putts, or losing fewer balls. Competition just lurks out on the course waiting to lure the next guy or gal into its web.
As my golf pals know, my favorite saying on the golf course is, "it's not about winning or losing, it's about winning!" I often say it in jest, but when it comes to golf scrambles (one of my favorite reasons for being on the golf course), I'm completely sucked into getting the lowest score the course is willing to give. I'm crazy about the team aspect of golf - I know some aren't but there's just something about it that appeals to me.
I also enjoy the games we play on the course when I get together with golf pals - match play, skins, or murder...and we're still working on our birdie card (still need 15 & 16!), so it seems I'm always running into that competitive urge on the course. I especially enjoy competing against the course - I look forward to the evenings of hitting multiple balls around for a few hours, hoping for that great approach shot, the killed drive or sinking a birdie putt or two. Sometimes I play best ball, sometimes I scramble, or on occassion, I'll play the worst ball scramble (that really tests my mental game!). The great thing about golf is that it's always up for a little game, and no matter how well prepared you are the course often seems to have the upper hand.
One thing I haven't done a lot of is play in individual tournaments. A combination of it being a busy work time of year and general nerves are what usually keep me away from the handful of women's events in our area. I love that golf allows all levels of players to participate (through handicaps or flighting), but I still feel a sense of intimidation about it all.
But after meeting two great gals at an event my Mom & I played in a month ago, I signed up for a 2-day match play event that starts on Thursday. I'm nervous as all get out, and I'm so disappointed that my game is currently in crummy shape, but I'm looking forward to this new experience! I'm playing a practice round with my new friends Wednesday after work, and then we find out when we tee off on Thursday. The event has 2 9-hole matches on Thursday and one 18-hole match on Friday.
I know these greens are going to be FAST, so I'm thankful for the opportunity to play there the day before. I have played the course a few times, but scrambles don't really give you that "feel" that you need when you're on your own.
The match play format should be good for me...I've always appreciated the concept that one bad hole (or two) doesn't have to ruin a round. Going out of the gate with 2 9-hole matches means that you can't let the round get away from you early, so I hope I'll be able to hang in and not be out in 5 holes! I'd at least like to make it a match.
My "to do list" is as follows...tonight, head to the course and get some more practice in. Keeping focused on chipping and putting and hopefully feeling at least "okay" off the tee. After golf, shine up my clubs and get some new balls out - I might actually go with the Callaway Pearls - they are a nice soft ball and I happen to have a few brand new ones (thanks to a friend!).
Then it's time for laundry and picking out what to wear. This may not be a big deal for most, but in Minnesota you need to be prepared for 80's one minute and 50's the next! It also looks like rain is in the forecast...figures.
I need to make time to watch a few Mindi Boysen clips to help get my arm and hand nice and loose, and finally, just relax and get ready to enjoy a new golf experience! I know I'll be nervous, but when I think about golf I can't help but be happy. Hopefully I won't embarrass myself too much! Think good thoughts for me this week.
Filed under: match play, competition, tournament, putting
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