Ideally in match play you should compete against the course and not your opponent, but there are many times when you must check your opponent's position, and the percentages, before proceeding. Quite likely this will keep you from doing something foolish. My only match-play loss of 1961 was due, mainly, to a stubborn disregard of percentages. In the first round of last year's Colonial Amateur Invitational in Memphis I was leading Bobby Greenwood of North Texas State 1 up with three holes to play. On the 520-yard 16th I had driven into the left rough, but he then put his second shot into a trap up near the green. I thought, aha, I'll just knock the ball onto the green with a one-iron, win the hole and be 2 up with two holes to play. To do so I had to hit a 220-yard shot out of the rough and over two traps that guarded the left side of this very firm green. The smart play would have been to hit a three-iron safely (dotted line) to the front of the green and chip from there for my birdie. I certainly would have had a much better chance of getting down in 2 from there than my opponent did from the trap. But I smashed away with the one-iron just the same (solid line) and wound up burying the ball under the lip of the first trap. I was lucky to get a 5, but still lost the hole to Greenwood's birdie. As a result, when I won the 17th it merely put me 1 up again instead of closing out the match 2 and 1. When Greenwood eagled the 18th and birdied the first extra hole I was beaten. The golfing moral is clear: when your opponent is in trouble and you've got a lead with only a couple of holes to play, don't get greedy. You may go hungry instead.