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While I agree that a high handicapper won't beat a pro very often on most holes, and that perhaps he will on the Postage Stamp, I'd say sample size is the issue, not luck.
I have yet to post a one hole score. I also have yet to see a high skill-level shot dispersion pattern where luck was not a significant part of result. Skill is the management of the variance within that dispersion. Luck is how it applies that day. The guy winning any Tour event that week is incredibly lucky - the hole just got in the way more frequently sooner.
Matt,Interesting overview. I would say this about luck and skill when it comes to golf - Luck is and always will be an inherent part of the game. However, the more interesting and thought provoking the golf hole, the more both luck and skill play a role. On a flat featureless straight-away hole for example, we both can hit 300 yard drives and there might be very little luck involved in that shot, only skill. If you add one strategically placed bunker, your 300 yard drive could be one yard from mine but mine finds the bunker and yours is safe to the side or just over it. That is where luck comes in over skill and it is a result of that hazard. Bottom line, luck will always be part of the game of golf and sometimes it will supersede skill. Best,Mark
Presumably your High Skill & High Luck for the Road Hole is based on playing it with the intent of getting on in 2 ? A more conservative approach of playing it as a 3 shotter would reduce the chance of getting a 4 but would enable the player to greatly reduce the risk of ending up in the hotel grounds with the drive or going on to the road with the approach. Not sure where luck would come into it apart from maybe getting either a poor or better than expected lie.
Re Postage Stamp - you are correct about the consequences of a miss and that is where perhaps luck comes into it most in that a miss could leave you with alternatively a very difficult up and down or an "impossible" one ! However can't agree about the skill factor. Controlling the ball in the wind isn't just pot luck as you seem to suggest.
What your graph also doesn't seem to take into account is the intimidation factor and the ability for the player to hold their nerve. Hitting a narrow target with a short iron is one thing when it is flanked by shallow bunkers with nice fluffy lies but quite another when the bunkers are tight and/or extremely deep.
Same hole, different round, strong player slightly mishits 7, hits a bit short and rolls back a few yards from the front edge. The weaker player thins the 5-iron, but that thing just runs out and onto the green. I like that. I think it's good. It's not a guarantee, but I like that it's a possibility. I like it so much better than "a bad shot should be irrevocably lost" or "It's not fair" or any other such thing.
What I donít understand is why most players canít just treat the bump as a hazard. Take enough club to carry it, or play closer to the bump at the risk of a bad bounce. (The bad bounce might at worst leave you with a 60-foot putt - itís not going to wind up o.b. or anything.)But these great players call this ďunfairĒ and ďluckyĒ and would prefer the certainty of being in a bunker for their bad shot, instead of being deflected away from the hole. And, note that most amateur golfers would far prefer the bad bounce that leaves them a long birdie putt.
Quote from: Tom_Doak on August 21, 2023, 04:43:43 PMWhat I donít understand is why most players canít just treat the bump as a hazard. Take enough club to carry it, or play closer to the bump at the risk of a bad bounce. (The bad bounce might at worst leave you with a 60-foot putt - itís not going to wind up o.b. or anything.)But these great players call this ďunfairĒ and ďluckyĒ and would prefer the certainty of being in a bunker for their bad shot, instead of being deflected away from the hole. And, note that most amateur golfers would far prefer the bad bounce that leaves them a long birdie putt."Bump as a hazard". Great description. Can be a friend as well if a bit of cunning is applied.ab
Why isn't this used more?
I and others have a tendency to blame good to elite players for this... can we blame the most skilled players for the plague of fairness? I'm not sure.
There are many contours on The Old Course at St. Andrews that the good player must tread carefully around, but the running 4-wood of an old codger will roll smoothly over. The codger just has to make sure not to wind up on the wrong side of that contour for his NEXT shot. And that right there is the definition of strategic golf.