GM regulars Fergus Bisset and Jeremy Ellwood debate which clubs they would choose to take in a three-club challenge, do you agree with either of them?

Which Clubs Would You Choose For a Three-Club Challenge?

3-iron, 7-iron, 54-degree wedge
says Fergus Bisset

I think for a challenge like this, you should play to your strengths.

In my case, putting isn’t one of them.

I could miss putts with the most expensive blade on the market.

For that reason, I wouldn’t waste a pick on the flat stick.

From the tee, a well-struck 3-iron will provide decent distance as well as reliable accuracy.

If my driver is playing up, I often go to the 3-iron to try and find some fairways.

It’s also a versatile weapon. You can punch it into the wind, let it fly with the breeze behind, play a low runner, or a cut-up floater.

With a little manipulation, a 3-iron can do all sorts of things… Seve famously used to demonstrate greenside bunker shots with his.

OK, OK, but it’s still good for a punch shot!

The 7-iron is also a club that can produce a selection of useful shots.

From mid-length approaches to bunts around the green, it’s probably the most used iron in my bag so it would be churlish to leave it out.
Then the 54-degree wedge for emergencies.

If you find the thick stuff, you need an exit strategy.

If you have to escape, or cover, a greenside bunker you need to produce some altitude.

Without a fairly lofted wedge, there are more than a few situations in which you could find yourself stymied.

And when it comes to putting, I’ll have two choices.

With a bit of practice beforehand, the blade of the 54-degree will produce a good roll.

It’s a shot many people use from just off the putting surface anyway.

Alternatively, a 3-iron works pretty effectively on the greens too.

There we are; all bases covered… Or just about.

Which Clubs Would You Choose For a Three-Club Challenge?

Hybrid, 9-iron, putter
says Jeremy Ellwood

“Not the putter! That’s a waste of a club in three-club challenge,” I hear some of you shouting at the page.

Yes, I could putt with the leading edge of a wedge or use a 3-iron or hybrid, but here’s why I would still take my putter.

It has historically been far and away the best club in my bag, and I’m sure my handicap would be higher than it is if my putter hadn’t performed so well for me over the years.

I would therefore prefer not to go into any golf battle without what I consider to be my number one asset as I would feel that the shots I might gain by still putting with a trusted friend would outweigh the dropped shots elsewhere through not having the right club for the shot in hand.

I would then go for a 9-iron, which, in addition to full shots of 120-140 yards, would also be a good chipping club – I use it quite often on longer chips already.

With a little manipulation of the face, it could also be used on all but those most up-the-face bunker shots.

For my distance club, I would select my hybrid, which has quite a strong loft of 17˚.

This would serve three purposes:

1) It would allow me to get it out there 200 yards or so off the tee;

2) It would offer greater playability from the rough than a long iron thanks to its more forgiving clubhead design and sole; and

3) it could be a handy alternative for chip shots when there are no obstacles to go over.

I look forward to putting my theory to the test in my club’s next three-club challenge!