February 28 2012
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- The last few weeks haven’t exactly gone well for Rory Sabbatini with missed cuts in each of his last three starts. But it was a second-round 80 at Riviera that was the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back.
“I just decided it’s time; I can’t just continue to try to and get around the golf course and try and escape,” Sabbatini, the defending champion at this week’s Honda Classic, said Tuesday. “We have to try and improve the whole situation.”
The other half of the “we” Sabbatini was referring to is swing coach Rick Smith.
In earnest, Smith and Sabbatini began talking about 18 months ago. After the Northern Trust Open, though, is when they got to work.
Sabbatini missed the cut the following week in Mexico, too, but he feels comfortable as he returns to the site of his last victory.
“We spent some time focusing on just getting the swing on the right angles, right planes and just shortening it up,” Sabbatini said. “It’s been an adjustment, but I think I’m finally starting to grab the concept and really feel like I’m more natural with it.