'Anchored' putting set for 2016 ban

"Anchored" putting, whereby the club is pivoted by a player's belly or chest, is set to be outlawed by 2016, world golf's two law-making bodies announced Wednesday.

In a joint statement, the Royal & Ancient (R&A) and the United States Golf Association (USGA) unveiled proposed changes to the sport's rules that would prevent players 'anchoring' the club in making a putting stroke.

The proposed rule would prohibit strokes made in such a way but would not alter existing equipment regulations which allow for the use of so-called 'belly' or 'long-handled' putters.

However, the R&A and the USGA said that prior to taking a final decision they would "consider any further comments and suggestions from throughout the golf community".

Last year Keegan Bradley became the first player to win a major with a putter anchored on his midriff at the PGA Championship. He was swiftly followed by Webb Simpson at this year's US Open, and Ernie Els at the British Open.

But golf traditionalists have long argued that 'belly-putters', which do not allow a free swing, go against the fundamentals of the sport.

"Throughout the 600-year history of golf, the essence of playing the game has been to grip the club with the hands and swing it freely at the ball," said USGA executive director Mike Davis in a joint statement issued with the R&A.

"Our conclusion is that the Rules of Golf should be amended to preserve the traditional character of the golf swing by eliminating the growing practice of anchoring the club."

It is a view supported by golf great Tiger Woods, who said this week: "I just believe that the art of putting is swinging the club and controlling nerves.

"Having it as a fixed point, as I was saying all year, is something that's not in the traditions of the game."

Nevertheless, with so many leading players now using belly or long-handled putters, perfectly legal equipment under the rules as they stand, golf officials are holding off from confirming a rule change they would like to take effect from January 1, 2016.

"We believe we have considered this issue from every angle but given the wide ranging interest in this subject we would like to give stakeholders in the game the opportunity to put forward any new matters for consideration," said R&A chief executive Peter Dawson.

Meanwhile major winners Padraig Harrington and Gary Player both welcomed the proposed ban.

"If belly putters were invented today, they'd definitely be banned, I think everyone agrees on that, Harrington, who won the British Open in 2007 and 2008 as well as the 2008 US PGA Championship, told Sky Sports News.

"The question is should they be banned now after 15, 20 years of people using them?," the Irishman added.

"But the rules of golf have always been that you can't anchor a club to your body, and clearly this is anchoring."

South Africa hero Player, one of just five golfers to have won all four majors -- The Masters, US Open, British Open and USPGA -- said: "I think the USGA and R&A have been brilliant and I congratulate them.

"I don't think they should be getting any feedback from the players. They are the ruling bodies and they should be able to make the rules as they see fit."

However, concerns have been raised that leading players and club manufacturers could take legal action against golf chiefs were "anchored" putting to be be outlawed, given it has been allowed for more than 20 years.

Even though officials were careful to say they did not intend to ban belly or long-handled putters, it is hard to see how a market for these clubs would still exist if the anchored-style of putting on which their use depends was banned.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Isuzu PH announces new President
    Isuzu PH announces new President

    Isuzu Philippines Corporation (IPC) formally announced the appointment of Hajime Koso as the new president replacing outgoing president Nobuo Izumina, who will be assigned as the Director of Isuzu Body Corporation, an affiliate of Isuzu Motors Limited (IML) in Japan. A native of Okayama Japan, the 57 years old executive has been working for IML for 35 […] The post Isuzu PH announces new President appeared first on Carmudi Philippines. …

  • Pacquiao sees fist of God delivering win over Mayweather
    Pacquiao sees fist of God delivering win over Mayweather

    Filipino boxing hero Manny Pacquiao is confident he can beat American arch-rival Floyd Mayweather in Las Vegas on Saturday with the power of God, after abandoning a life he said was packed with sin condemning him to hell. Pacquiao is in top form both in mind and spirit after he traded his boozing, gambling and womanising ways for a devout life of prayer, his spiritual adviser, Jeric Soriano, told AFP in a recent Manila interview. Except the world got to him," Soriano said of Pacquiao's …

  • Honda sells Limited Edition CR-V and Jazz
    Honda sells Limited Edition CR-V and Jazz

    Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. (HCPI) is starting to roll out their limited edition models—the all-new Jazz and CR-V. The 20 units of all-new Jazz Cool Blue Limited Edition will have refreshing Brilliant Sporty Blue paint color and factory-installed Modulo accessories while the 10 new CR-V 2.4 SX units are available with limited edition Gold Brown […] The post Honda sells Limited Edition CR-V and Jazz appeared first on Carmudi Philippines. …

  • Celebrities urge Australia PM to do more to save execution pair
    Celebrities urge Australia PM to do more to save execution pair

    Celebrities including Oscar winner Geoffrey Rush released a video Tuesday urging Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott to fly to Indonesia to help save two citizens facing execution, forcing the government to defend its tactics. "Bali Nine" drug traffickers Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan could face the firing squad within hours, along with others from Brazil, Nigeria, the Philippines and an Indonesian prisoner. Australia, Indonesia's close neighbour, has mounted a sustained diplomatic …

  • ISIS has not penetrated Phl – AFP
    ISIS has not penetrated Phl – AFP

    Security officials yesterday maintained that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has not penetrated the Philippines following an expert’s warning that the group poses a threat to the country. Abu Sayyaf, BIFF (Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters), private armed groups to our knowledge are the people making problems down south,” Armed Forces chief Gen. Gregorio Catapang Jr. said. The BIFF and the Abu Sayyaf have pledged allegiance to the ISIS but it remains uncertain whether they are …

  • Cerbo named national police intel chief
    Cerbo named national police intel chief

    Philippine National Police officer-in-charge Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina yesterday ordered the appointment of PNP spokesman Chief Superintendent Generoso Cerbo Jr. as chief of the Directorate for Intelligence. …

  • Pump prices up anew
    Pump prices up anew

    Oil companies announced yesterday another round of price hikes with independent oil firms among the first to issue their respective announcements. PTT Philippines, the local subsidiary of Thailand’s biggest oil firm, and Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, another independent oil company, were among the first to issue their respective advisories. Seaoil Philippines also issued its announcement. …

  • PNP to ease rules on gun permit processing
    PNP to ease rules on gun permit processing

    The Philippine National Police will simplify requirements for getting a firearm’s permit under the new gun control law, PNP officer-in-charge Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina said yesterday. Espina said they are working to simplify the process to secure a license to own and possess firearms (LTOPF) amid complaints of excessive requirements from gun holders. Espina directed the Firearms and Explosives Office (FEO) to make it easier for legitimate gun owners to comply with the …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options