PGA TOUR acknowledges that the USGA has adopted Rule 14-1b which prohibits anchored putting as of January 1, 2016.
We would like to thank the USGA for providing the opportunity for input and suggestions relative to Rule 14-1b over the last several months. During that time, various questions were raised and issues discussed.
We will now begin our process to ascertain whether the various provisions of Rule 14-1b will be implemented in our competitions and, if so, examine the process for implementation.
In this regard, over the next month we will engage in discussions with our Player Advisory Council and Policy Board members.
We will announce our position regarding the application of Rule 14-1b to our competitions upon conclusion of our process and we will have no further comment on the matter until that time.
The USGA and R&A officially announced the ban of the anchored stroke on Tuesday morning, sending plenty of golf's elite players, coaches and equipment manufacturers to Twitter to make a statement.
We'll be monitoring the world's reaction to this decision all day long, as well as gathering reaction on the ground at the Senior PGA, Crowne Plaza Invitational and overseas at Wentworth.
Here is a collection of early reaction:
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Bernhard Langer, two-time Masters winner and current Champions Tour player who has used a long putter since the mid-1990s
"It's disappointing . . . very disappointing. It's the same thing I've said for months: I don't know why they couldn't come to the same conclusion 40 years ago that they did today. Why does it take 40 years? Just because we have major winners, that's what it comes down to."
What does this do to you from a competition standpoint?
"I don't know . . . it's two years from now . . . I don't know. We'll have to wait to see what the PGA Tour says, and right now, we're all guessing. We'll see what the PGA Tour does. If they make ...
Nearly six months after the USGA and R&A proposed a ban on anchoring, golf’s two governing bodies have made Rule 14-1b official during a press conference on Tuesday morning.
The Rule’s purpose is to ensure that all players face the same challenge of controlling the entire club in making a stroke and to eliminate anchoring’s potential advantages.
In advance of Tuesday's announcement, USGA executive director Mike Davis, USGA president Glen Nager and Mark Newell, chairman of the USGA’s Rules Committee, fielded questions from Golfweek on an array of topics pertaining to the anchoring ban.
• • •
Since nothing has changed to the proposed ruling, why do you think the golfers will feel like their voice has been heard?
Nager: We have done an extensive analysis of the comments received and shared with the public our assessment of the comments so those who have provided us with the comments, for which we're deeply appreciative, will know that we've been heard and will know what our thinking is.
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There's certainly a perception that the USGA is an elitist organization that's out of touch with everyday golfers. Is there any concern that a decision like ...
Over the past few months The PGA of America has taken a vocal and active position which reflected the strong viewpoint of our PGA Professionals in opposing the USGA and R&A's proposed Rule 14-1b that would ban the anchored stroke. Today, the governing bodies indicated that they will proceed with the formal adoption of the rule.
We are disappointed with this outcome. As we have said publicly and repeatedly during the comment period, we do not believe 14-1b is in the best interest of recreational golfers and we are concerned about the negative impact it may have on both the enjoyment and growth of the game. Growing the game is one of the fundamental purposes of The PGA of America.
Although we do not agree with the decision, we applaud the USGA for its willingness to listen to our concerns and engage in meaningful discussions. In our opinion and based on our experience, the USGA treated the comment period for what it was intended to be -- a time to exchange opinions, concerns and potential solutions.
We should also note that our difference of opinion regarding 14-1b should not in any way detract from the healthy relationship we have ...
Acting "for the Good of the game," the USGA and R&A were scheduled to announce May 21 the adoption of Rule 14-1b, which prohibits anchoring the club in making a stroke.
Golfweek reviewed an advance summary of the announcement, which was scheduled after the magazine went to press. The rule will take effect Jan. 1, 2016, with the next edition of the Rules of Golf.
In a 40-page report, the U.S. Golf Association and R&A explained Rule 14-1b is “to preserve one of the important traditions and challenges of the game – that the player freely swing the entire club,” USGA president Glen Nager said.
The decision makes clear that one set of rules is essential to the future health of the game.
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In a written statement, the PGA Tour said it plans to meet with its Player Advisory Council and Policy Board members during the next month and determine whether Rule 14-1b will be implemented.
Ted Bishop, president of the PGA of America, expressed concern about “the negative impact it may have on both the enjoyment and growth of the game.”
A proposal to add the ...
CHARLOTTE, N.C. Padraig Harrington could be compared to a Prohibitionist enjoying a frosty brew. Harrington, a proponent on the proposed ban of the anchoring stroke, put a belly putter into play Thursday at the Wells Fargo Championship. It didn’t help, as Harrington shot 80 at Quail Hollow Club, needing 32 putts on the course’s bumpy putting surfaces.
Harrington started using the putter last week, saying boredom led him to experiment with one last week. “Mechanically, everything I do with my putting stroke is better with the belly putter than without it,” he said. “I was like, 'Oh, I wonder what that looks like,' and I was surprised to see everything was better. In terms of the mechanics, it was a far better stroke. Obviously, feel is an issue when you haven’t used it before.”
Thursday’s round was his first round in the 80s on the PGA Tour since a second-round 80 at the 2007 U.S. Open at Oakmont. Harrington's use of the anchored putter is ironic because he became an R&A “ambassador” in 2011. The R&A has been considered the driving force behind the proposed anchoring ban. Harrington supports the ban ...
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The biggest rivalry in golf at the moment could be the heads of two different organizations on opposite sides of the Atlantic Ocean.
PGA of America president Ted Bishop has been vocal about his opposition to the proposed rule that would ban the anchored stroke used for long putters. Royal & Ancient chief executive Peter Dawson last week referred to Bishop's public comments as a "campaign."
"The PGA of America knows my views about this and I'm disappointed at the way that campaign was conducted," Dawson said. "It put rule-making onto the negotiating table. The negotiating table is no place for rule-making to take place. Obviously, the feelings are strong. We shall have to see where it goes."
Bishop took it one step further in an interview and exchange of emails with Golf World magazine, in which he revealed details of his encounter with Dawson during the Masters and questioned the R&A's male-only membership.
"I find that to be very curious and perplexing given the fact that the R&A has not been inclusive, as evidenced by their unwillingness to accept women as members to the R&A," Bishop told the magazine. "This is ...
History says the primary responsibilities of the two ruling bodies are to:
- make rules;
- conduct national championships.
There is nothing in the charter of either organization about growing the game or making golfers happy. Rulesmaking in golf never has been a popularity contest.
Golfers who secure long putters against their chests or stick belly putters into their stomachs probably will be unhappy when the final ruling is announced.
The USGA and R&A carefully have staked out their position and articulated their proposal to golfers around the world. There is no doubt how they feel and what they believe is best for the long-term health of the game.
Here in the United States, we pay too little attention to the R&A. The two ruling bodies have pledged to reach a mutual conclusion on anchoring. There will be no split decision. Thus it is imperative to look closely at the R&A.
The notion of the R&A capitulating to pro-anchoring advocates is unthinkable to many international observers. Over the decades, the R&A never has been frightened by the specter of criticism. For example, having survived women’s liberation and several generations of feminist rhetoric, the R&A still ...
DORAL, Fla. –- There is a passion in his voice. What’s more, it’s hard to debate that he doesn’t provide a well-grounded and profound thought process that any courtroom attorney would be proud to call his own. If Tim Clark wowed them at a PGA Tour players’ meeting Jan. 21 to discuss the proposed ban on anchoring, he demonstrated Wednesday night exactly why.
Compelling and committed, Clark broke his monthslong silence on the subject and offered praise for Tour commissioner Tim Finchem’s opposition to the ban. Though U.S. Golf Association and R&A officials seem staunchly opposed to the anchored putting stroke – a method that Clark has used for approximately 15 years – the Tour veteran said he remains “quite optimistic” that his technique will remain part of the game.
“As players now, we’re just going to support Tim in his stance," Clark said. "We think he’s made the right decision.”
Since the decision in late November by the USGA and the R&A to propose a ban on anchoring, Clark has not been heard, but for good reason. He chose to study the issue, formulate his thoughts and plead the case first to his ...
Well, they did ask for comments, didn’t they?
Now that the 90-day comment period regarding the proposed anchoring ban is over, the U.S. Golf Association and the R&A – which received an earful from many of golf’s leaders – have a few things to consider.
Foremost among them: With the PGA Tour and PGA of America opposed to proposed Rule 14-1b, which would ban the anchoring stroke used with belly and long putters, should the USGA and R&A go ahead anyway?
The game’s governing bodies released statements March 1, saying the comment period that ended Feb. 28 has been “very constructive.” Now, golfers worldwide – professional and amateur – are left to see what’s next.
“On this issue, we think if they were to move forward, they would be making a mistake,” PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem said in a news conference.
Other leaders in the game don't concur. Recently, the commissioners of the European Tour, Sunshine Tour, LPGA and Ladies European Tour voiced their support for the USGA and R&A on the proposed ban, which would take effect when the Rules of Golf are updated, in 2016.
Because this is the first time the ...
It’s official – the European Tour will back the R&A’s proposed ban on anchoring. In a statement released by the European Tour today, chief executive George O’Grady states:
“The European Tour has been fully involved in the consultation process which ended on February 28th, and deeply value this involvement. Our Members support the unique role played by the governing bodies in formulating the Rules of Golf.
“Additionally, virtually all of our Tournament Committee and player representatives support the proposed rule even though they are aware, and have taken into account, the fact that some members and especially our senior members use the anchored method.”
As reported on Golfweek.com last week, the European Tour’s board of directors and O’Grady agreed Feb. 25 to back the R&A on anchoring. O’Grady had already consulted with representatives of the 15-man tournament committee by phone or email before the board meeting. Both the tournament committee and the board overwhelmingly endorsed the R&A’s proposed rule change on anchoring.
The European Tour’s stance is consistent with the Ladies’ European Tour and the British Professional Golfers’ Association. All three bodies have backed the R&A‘s proposed ...
The R&A can count on all three professional bodies in the British Isles supporting its stance in the anchoring debate following a decision by the Ladies European Tour to back the ruling body.
“The LET is a members' organization which I can confirm was consulted during the notice and comment period,” said Sally McPherson, the LET’s Membership and Tour School Director. “On behalf of its membership, the LET confirmed to the R&A that we are in support of the proposed rules change to prohibit use of anchored strokes as it was felt it was in the long term interests of the game.”
The decision by LET aligns with the European Tour and the British Professional Golfers’ Association. The European Tour’s board of directors met with chief executive George O’Grady on Monday and agreed to back whatever stance the R&A takes on the anchoring issue.
The British PGA revealed last week that the issue had been discussed by its board. Sandy Jones, chief executive of the British PGA, said his members had expressed support for a ban on anchoring.
The support of the three professional bodies puts the R&A in a much stronger position ...
Jeff Rude’s “Hate To Be Rude” column appears on Golfweek.com on Wednesday.
One would think that there’s powerful momentum opposing the U.S. Golf Association’s proposed ban on anchoring long and belly putters. After all, the PGA Tour, PGA of America and National Golf Course Owners Association in recent days have expressed their dissent.
Now that the 90-day comment period is closing Thursday, the question is whether such strong voices will be enough to prompt the USGA to change its mind before acting this spring.
Your guess is as good as mine. The hope here is that it will listen to those corners and continue to allow anchoring for the sake of the game’s enjoyment and growth.
The debate comes at a time when there is no statistical evidence that anchoring gives a competitive advantage. Three players in the game’s history have won major championships while anchoring putters. That’s a drop in the sea. The Anchors Away fuss, though, comes because of three of the last five have anchored.
The problem with the proposed ban is that it seems to focus on a few touring pros instead of the 25 million or so ...
The European Tour will not join forces with the PGA Tour and oppose the proposed anchoring ban suggested by the U.S. Golf Association and the R&A, according to a source who spoke on the condition of anonymity at the London-based tour.
George O'Grady, chief executive of the European Tour, would not confirm his organization's position during an interview at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. However, he hasn't received nearly the level of opposition from his membership that his counterpart, Tim Finchem, has heard on the American tour.
"I've talked to our top players ... and I haven't had a lot of people who think it should be banned," O'Grady said last week in Marana, Ariz. "My door hasn't been beaten down saying we must repel this."
During a news conference Sunday at the Match Play, Finchem said the PGA Tour has asked the USGA and R&A to rescind their call for a ban on the anchored stroke when the Rules of Golf are updated Jan. 1, 2016. A 90-day comment period ends Feb. 28, and golf's ruling bodies intend to make a decision in the spring.
An estimated 18 percent ...
Recent Anchoring Videos
Golfweek senior writer Alex Miceli offers his thoughts after Wednesday's press conference by the USGA and R&A.
USGA, R&A explain proposed Rules change to prohibit anchored strokes.