Cameron Smith is the ideal foursomes partner.
The three-time PGA Tour winner isn't the longest off the tee, but he's deadly on the greens. He's currently ranked second in putts per round on the PGA Tour, averaging 27.50 for his last 54 rounds. The Brisbane native is also fresh off a second place finish at the Masters, so his confidence is high.
Playing partner and fellow Australian Marc Leishman must have had one thought in mind all week at the Zurich Classic...put Smith in position to hole putts, and he will.
The formidable pairing managed to pick up the win in New Orleans, fending off South Africa's Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel in a one hole play-off.
So what makes Smith so effective on the greens?
Smith, below, tucks both elbows in so they are nearly touching his ribcage. This allows him to rock the shoulders back and through, stabilising the putter head during his swing.
If you’re struggling with off-centre hits with the putter, I would make this your first check point. Close the gap between your elbow and ribcage, and allow your upper body to work as one unit. The more the gap increases, the more disconnected you’ll feel.
Smith has a narrow stance, and very little flex in the knees. This allows him to stand tall over the ball, something I’m a fan of. I don’t like seeing players hunched over the ball. It creates more bend in the arms, causing them to move away from the upper body.
I think keeping your head still is a mistake. Trying not to move at all will only make you tighten both your shoulders, and grip pressure. You can't make putts like that.
Smith, below, lets his head move during the backswing, and his follow-through. It’s a small amount, but enough to let the putter head swing uninhibited from tension.
If you're a nervous putter, loosen the shoulders, lighten the grip pressure and let your eyes follow the ball to the hole.