Toy Box: Stricker wields new flatstick

Steve Stricker reads a putt during the World Challenge.

Steve Stricker reads a putt during the World Challenge.

Steve Stricker turned heads at the World Challenge when he showed up with a new putter. Known as one of the best putters in the world, Stricker played with a face-balanced Odyssey Sabertooth conventional-length putter. For several years he has used an Odyssey White Hot No. 2 that is conventional length but not face-balanced.

With a toe-down putter that is not face-balanced, the putter face tends to close slightly at impact. Golfers who employ an arc-type putting stroke tend to prefer toe-down putters.

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McDowell’s mixed bag: Graeme McDowell won his second World Challenge at Sherwood Country Club with a mixed bag of clubs. McDowell carried a Cleveland Classic 290 driver (9 degree), Cleveland Launcher FL 3-wood (15 degree), Adams Idea Pro a12 (17 degree), Adams Idea a7 (22 degree), Srixon Z-TX II irons (4-9), Cleveland 588 Forged wedges (48, 52 and 58 degree) and an Odyssey White Hot No. 7 conventional-length putter. He played a Srixon Z-Star XV prototype ball.

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Fowler plays new Cobra clubs: Rickie Fowler played 12 new Cobra clubs at the World Challenge, and three of them (Amp Cell driver, 3-wood and hybrid) had vibrant orange heads.

Fowler’s choice of wedge lofts was interesting to note. He carried three new Cobra Proto Tour Trusty Rusty wedges with lofts of 47, 51 and 55 degrees.

Few touring pros play without a lob wedge, and Fowler is one.

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Short shots: The worldwide victory total by the Pro V1 and Pro V1x reached 1,900 when Arnond Vongvanij (Pro V1x) won the King’s Cup on the Asian Tour, Hiroyuki Fujita (Pro V1) took the Japan Tour’s Nippon Series JT Cup and Sebastian Fernandez (Pro V1x) triumphed in the Columbian Coffee Classic on the PGA Tour Latinoamerica. . . . Highlights of equipment usage at the PGA Tour Q-School: TaylorMade won the driver count (66), while Titleist captured irons (49), putters (56) and wedges (156, counting all sand, lob and approach wedges).

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