Top 50 teacher Kevin Weeks works with a half dozen tour players on their putting, but the technique Robert Streb used at The Greenbrier Classic was one Weeks usually only teaches on the practice green.
After breaking his putter with a careless toss toward his bag behind the ninth green, Streb was forced to putt with his 56-degree sand wedge. It apparently wasn't much of a handicap. Streb made five birdies with the alternative flatstick, and made it into a playoff with Danny Lee, David Hearn and Kevin Kisner.
"Some people go with driver, some people go with hybrid, but I think he made the right call using wedge there," says Weeks, who is based at Cog Hill Golf & Country Club in Lemont, Ill. "If you're going to try it, take your normal putting setup and normal putting grip, and favor your lead leg while tilting your spine slightly back. Move the ball slightly forward in your stance to make sure you hit up on the ball with the leading edge of the wedge, then make your same putting stroke."
If you hit the ball near the equator, it will come off the leading edge of the wedge and roll just like it would with a putter. "It's actually a great way to practice even if you have your putter with you," Weeks says. "If you can consistently hit the equator of the ball with your wedge, you're doing lots of nice things with your putting stroke. You aren't flipping your hands or hitting down on the ball, and you're staying nice and quiet with your body."
Streb was able to replace his putter before the playoff, but he didn't get a chance to try the new blade. He missed the green on the first hole, and watched Hearn and Lee make birdie putts that knocked him out.