MARANA, Ariz. — Four months before he won the 2006 U.S. Open, Geoff Ogilvy defeated Davis Love 4 and 3 to win the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. The following year, the Aussie advanced to the final before losing 3 and 2 to Henrik Stenson. On Friday, Ogilvy defeated Camilo Villegas 2 and 1 to advance to the quarterfinals of this season's event.
"The 3-wood is the hardest club in your bag to get right," he said. For most Tour players, the 3-wood is the only wood that needs to create the same launch conditions, and fly the same distance, both off the tee and from the fairway.
Ogilvy had been using a King Cobra X-Speed 3-wood. "It was awesome, and I could choke down on and do different stuff with it," he said. "It was quite versatile. The new one is very good, too."
For Ogilvy, who said he tends to create a lot of spin with his swing, finding just the right 3-wood is especially tough. "I tend to hit the ball high, but if I find a 3-wood that creates the flight that I want to see it tends to go too far because it doesn't have enough loft," he said.
That may sound like a nice problem to have, but for Ogilvy, it genuinely is cause for concern.
"I would be hitting it 300 with a driver, 280 with a 3-wood and 225 with a 2-iron. That's not right," he explained. That large distance gap between the 3-wood and 2-iron could put him in a bind on the course. "The balance for me is finding one that goes far enough for me to be happy, but not go too far."
Ogilvy had been testing the S9-1 on the range since the Mercedes Championship in January, an event he won. He admitted its performance has always been a little better than his old 3-wood, but, as he repeated, "It's just changing a club that is hard to change."
This week, Ogilvy also swapped out his King Cobra Pro CB Forged 2-iron and put in a 5-wood. The 5-wood's loft has been bent from 18° to 20° to help Ogilvy make the ball stop faster on the undulating greens of the Ritz-Carlton Course at Dove Mountain.
Here is a complete list of the clubs in Ogilvy's bag this week:
Driver: King Cobra S9-1 Pro D (10.5°) with Aldila VooDoo XVS8 shaft
Fairway woods: King Cobra S9-1 Pro (15°, 20°) with Fujikura Sapphire shaft,
Irons: King Cobra Pro MB (3-9) with Royal Precision FCM Rifle 7.3 shafts
Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design (50°, 55°), Spin Milled (60°)
Putter: Scotty Cameron by Titleist Newport prototype
Ball: Titleist Pro V1 (2009)
(Photo by Chris Carlson/AP Photos)