The Hacker: By hook or by shank I'll sort myself out. I don't need special dimples in my balls

A new golf ball which can get rid of the slices and hooks that make life a misery for hackers has been developed in the United States.

It has a pattern of irregular dimples that reduces side-spin, which is the underlying cause of a ball swerving right or left. They claim that it reduces slices or hooks by up to 75 per cent.

The ball has been promptly banned by the US golfing authorities. However, the makers say that the ball was not meant for elite golfers but for the more wayward.

There isn't a group of people in sport who need help more than hackers but I am not sure that even the most desperate among us would really welcome such an easy cure for our problems.

We need saving from ourselves – but we need to do it ourselves. A ball guaranteed to go straighter, where's the challenge in that?

What's next? A way to stop us having air-shots, or doing away with duffed chips, or perhaps an anti-shank device...

It reminds me of the story of a hacker who died and then found himself on the first tee of a beautiful golf course.

There was a shiny bag with his name on it, full of the latest clubs. He took out the driver, hit the ball 300 yards down the middle and proceeded to play in an immaculate manner that he had always dreamed of. He shot a 63 and rushed into the bar, which was full of glum men.

"Drinks all round," he shouted. "I've just scored 63."

"Save your money," said the barman. "Everyone scores 63, without fail, every time they play. We don't bother to go out any more. This isn't heaven, friend, this is hell."

And while on the subject, I had a hellish time in Cardigan last weekend. It wasn't Cardigan's fault. Eirian has been organising a weekend there for 30 of us for the past 10 years. We play at Cardigan twice and once at Newport (Pembs), and always have a good time.

This year was no different and we even managed to dodge the worst of the showers. But Sunday we were hit by a fierce easterly wind.

I'm not sure if even the new miracle ball would have stayed straight; it was strong enough to blow a bullet off course.

We were playing in teams of four, with the best three Stableford scores on each hole to count. It was not an auspicious start.

Peter, who plays off 17, hit a monstrous shank on the first and continued to be plagued by the problem. Rob, a 15-handicapper, struggled to find his usual consistency and Alan, playing off 20, couldn't get his game together for the first few holes.

But I was going quite nicely and after three holes I'd scored five points, which was as many as the other three put together.

Then the wheels came off. I didn't score for the next six holes. When I did manage to hit it straight-ish, the wind took it to faraway places. I was in miserable company because as a team we did poorly.

Alan was our top scorer with 22 points, Peter and Rob had 20 each and I had a terrible 14. But there was one bright spot. I always have a fiver bet with John, another old hacker, on who scores the most. I was ready to fork out until I saw his face. He'd scored 13.

You'd think players like us would do anything to rid ourselves of these humiliations. But if I'm going to defeat my demons I want to do so unaided by any scientific wizardry, thank you very much.

p.corrigan@independent.co.uk

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas