It might seem like the most trivial part of golf, but the choice of ball you go into your round with can make a huge difference in the way you play. Take, for instance, a cricket match – the guy bowling the ball is going to be quite picky and choosy about the orb he eventually opts for in the end. Just take a look at any start of a cricket match, and you might catch a glimpse of the bowler in consultation with the captain, if he is not the captain already, and the standing umpires about the ball he wants to open the match with. Similar tactics should be displayed in golf, which is more of an individual than a team sport, but requires the same individualistic thinking in some cases.
The traditional hue of a golf ball is evidently white. In the history of the game, there has been little arguing with this, much like tennis players at Wimbledon have to have an outfit that is predominantly white and cricketers at a Test match have to do the same. However, like in some international tennis competitions and in ODI or Twenty20 competition in the game of cricket, golf has toyed with steering clear of tradition in some cases. Therein, we have seen balls for golfers coloured other than white – orange, pink and yellow in some instances. These cases are not often, but deserve due recognition for effectively lighting up the game.
One can’t really put an exact finger on it, but although each ball in a box might look exactly the same as the other ones, it might well feel different from one player to another. What one golfer deems heavy, a different golfer might feel is light. Then you will get a third player that feels the ball is neither light nor heavy, but just right. It is often a matter of opinion, not fact, and that’s just the way these things go really. The mental side of golf is as much a factor as the physical side of it, and this very much plays out in the selection of a golf ball.
There are hundreds of golf brands out there, each insisting their ball is better or stronger or lighter or heavier than the others. Discernment from yourself and others is important when separating the market hype from the truth, and one of the key ways of doing this is to ask a lot of questions of the brand and its market. You will soon find who are reputable and who are less reputable, but at the end of the insight and several questions, you must feel well positioned enough to make an informed decision. This ball, and many alongside it, after all, needs to carry you through many rounds of golf – and hopefully keep you out of the rough, but just negotiate the greens and fairways well. You don’t want a lopsided or poorly weighted ball throwing you off a score of under 80, if that is your sports goal, or under 70 if that is your ultimate dream number.