This is the dreaded buried lie in the bunker. Usually it's the shot that was almost really good, but you end up with such a difficult shot and one that can result in absolute disaster if you don't play it properly. There are so many theories about how to play this shot but I'm going to relay my idea to you, it's one that has worked under pressure.
How to Hit a Buried Lie Bunker Shot Under Pressure
I remember being at the Kemper Open, the last tournament that I won, and having this shot on the 17th hole, a fate worst than death. So here's what works under pressure. I play the ball back in my stance; my weight is forward as it is on all my bunker shots.
Close the Clubface
I close the clubface, now this sounds a bit different but believe me this works. I close the clubface and now what I do; I pick the club up with my left hand. I pick it straight back, not necessarily outside, straight back, then I'm going to hit directly down on the ball. I'm going to hit down with my right hand.
My intention is to pop the ball out of the pocket which is surrounded by sand. I’m not going to follow-through. I'm going to leave the club right in the sand and the force of the impact in the sand is going to force the ball onto the green and land actually quite softly. Now if you can simply get the ball on the green from a buried lie, you're way ahead of the game. So try that idea.