Last month, at the Omega European Masters, a video of Rory McIlroy giving a bunker lesson to Justin Timberlake went viral. In it McIlroy can be heard and seen getting pretty technical with his bunker approach. As Timberlake looked on and nodded in agreement at everything the Northern Irishman was saying, McIlroy then put what he was describing into action, and he nearly holed the shot:
Timberlake, who plays off a 1 handicap, is probably a fine bunker player, but when someone like Rory is dishing out free advice, you listen. But it's one thing to listen closely, it's another to go practice what McIlroy taught him and then execute it. Apparently, Timberlake not only took mental notes, but he must have practiced his bunker play in the weeks to follow, and it paid off on Thursday at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, where JT is one of the many celebrities in the field. Here he is at Carnoustie playing from a pot bunker and needing to carry a burn to a back right pin:
USEFUL. I think every tour pro in the field would sign for that result. That was world class.
This week Timberlake is playing alongside Justin Rose, who seems to hobnob with musicians every chance he gets. As a team, they're six under with two holes to play in the opening round, which is only good enough for T-65 at the moment. The good news is they're getting Carnoustie out of the way first, but they have a lot of work to do over the next two days to make it to Sunday. The leading 60 professionals advance after 54 holes, but only the top 20 Pro-Am teams advance. Timberlake is going to need some more short-game magic or else he'll be saying "Bye, Bye, Bye" to his playing partner on Saturday night (I'm so sorry).