Anchoring

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Jeff Rude
Ernie Els is one of three players to win a major with the anchored putter, coming last July at the Open Championship.
Ernie Els is one of three players to win a major with the anchored putter, coming last July at the Open Championship.

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 ...

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European Tour CEO George O'Grady
European Tour CEO George O'Grady

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 ...

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Alex Miceli
Commissioner Tim Finchem publicly opposed the potential anchoring ban for the first time on Sunday.
Commissioner Tim Finchem publicly opposed the potential anchoring ban for the first time on Sunday.

The biggest volley yet in the anchoring debate came Sunday when PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem opposed the ban on the anchored stroke proposed by the U.S. Golf Association and R&A.

In a letter sent to the USGA on Thursday, Finchem stated the Tour’s opposition to proposed Rule 14-1b, which would ban the anchored stroke commonly used with long or belly putters, beginning when the Rules of Golf are updated Jan. 1, 2016.

“Essentially where the PGA Tour came down was that they did not think that banning anchoring was in the best interest of golf or ...

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Alistair Tait

The British Professional Golfers’ Association will not resist the proposed ban on the anchoring stroke, chief executive Sandy Jones told Golfweek.

“We did not survey our membership like the PGA of America, but we have discussed it at board level,” Jones said. “Our view was that (we) don’t think it makes much difference to the growth of the game in the United Kingdom if the stroke is banned.”

Long or belly putters are not as prevalent in the United Kingdom as they are in the United States. As a result, Jones does not think a ban on the anchoring ...

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Categories: For Your Game, Anchoring
Adam Schupak
The Boccieri Golf Heavy Putter K4-M.
The Boccieri Golf Heavy Putter K4-M.

While the U.S. Golf Association and R&A are in the midst of what they call a 90-day period of feedback regarding the proposed anchoring ban (Rule 14-1b), the damage to sales of long and belly putters already has been done.

“What’s less than a screeching halt?” said David Lowe, vice president of product development and sourcing for retailer Golfsmith International, when asked to describe the effect of the Nov. 28 announcement on sales.

Even though the rule wouldn’t go into effect until 2016 and the putters themselves still would be considered legal, at the PGA Merchandise ...

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Jeff Rude
Steve Stricker
Steve Stricker

MARANA, Ariz. – Count Steve Stricker, one of the four players on the PGA Tour Policy Board, among what he says is a majority and growing number of Tour players who oppose the proposed ban on putter anchoring.

The Tour will send a letter to the U.S. Golf Association and R&A by the end of the week, Stricker said Tuesday. A day earlier he participated in a pair of 45-minute conference calls – one for the 16-member Player Advisory Council, the other for the Policy Board – on the subject

“My opinion and a lot of players’ opinions changed because the ...

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February 19, 2013 | 11:37 a.m.

Course owners tell USGA not to oppose anchoring

Alex Miceli
Mike Davis
Mike Davis

The National Golf Course Owners Association has added its voice to the growing cry in the industry to oppose the ban on anchoring proposed by the U.S. Golf Association and R&A.

A day after the PGA Tour met to discuss the proposed ban, the NGCOA, which claims membership of 3,258 golf courses and 1,900 owners, made public Feb. 19 a letter submitted during the proposal's 90-day comment period, which ends Feb. 28.

In the statement addressed to USGA executive director Mike Davis and signed by NGCOA chief executive Michael Hughes, the association said it is ...

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Alex Miceli
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem

TUCSON, Ariz. – Opposition to the proposed ban on the anchored stroke surfaced Monday night in two key meetings on the PGA Tour.

According to a source, more than 80 percent of participants on a Player Advisory Council conference call voiced a position against the recommendation by the U.S. Golf Association and the R&A to ban the stroke associated with long and belly putters. Golf's governing bodies have called for the ban to take effect with the next printing of the Rules of Golf, in 2016.

Members of the Tour's Policy Board hold similar views, according to ...

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February 18, 2013 | 2:19 p.m.

Q&A: John Solheim, chairman & CEO of Ping

Adam Schupak
John Solheim with his dog at his home in Phoenix, Ariz.
John Solheim with his dog at his home in Phoenix, Ariz.

PHOENIX, Ariz. – Few people have attended the PGA Merchandise Show as many times as Ping’s John Solheim. I always make a point of scheduling an appointment with him to gain his insight, perspective, and listen to his state of the industry. But this year marked a rare absence.

“It’s not that I didn’t want to be there,” Solheim said to me recently. “I participated in the (PGA Tour’s) Sony Hawaiian Open Pro-Am the week before. It is a family tradition. My dad started playing it in 1968. He went every year after that until I replaced ...

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Alex Miceli
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem

When the USGA and R&A jointly announced a proposed ban on anchoring, the game's governing bodies indicated they were open to comments for 90 days, ending Feb. 28.

Officials added that they didn't think there was any aspect of the proposal that they hadn't fully explored.

Put another way, they were going to ban the stroke most commonly associated with the long and anchored putters, and there was nothing that could sway them.

“We believe we have considered this issue from every angle," R&A chief executive Peter Dawson said, "but given the wide-ranging interest in ...

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PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem

SAN DIEGO – PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem addressed the media Wednesday morning to discuss the previous night’s players meeting and the Tour’s reaction to the proposed anchoring ban. The b-word, “bifurcation,” came up, and Finchem made it clear that he is not opposed to separate sets of rules for professionals and amateurs.

“Technically there is that possibility,” Finchem said. “However, it certainly wouldn’t be our objective. Our objective is to follow the rules and keep the rules together.

“Having said that, the whole question of bifurcation is always out there to be discussed. ... Personally, I think in ...

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Alex Miceli
Carl Pettersson
Carl Pettersson

KAPALUA, Hawaii – The belly/long-putter debate has not cooled since the announcement late last year that the U.S. Golf Association and R&A proposed a ban on the anchoring stroke.

The Associated Press reported Tuesday that Carl Pettersson, who has used a long putter for all 16 years of his professional career, objected strongly to the proposed ban, calling it a “witch hunt” and that it would be silly to outlaw a stroke that has been around for 40 years.

When asked to discuss the tentative ban, announced Nov. 28, Pettersson said Wednesday that he was unwilling to talk ...

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Golfweek Staff

As the calendar turns and we head into 2013, there are plenty of questions that face the golf world.

So we've attacked three prominent ones: Will Tiger Woods win a major in '13? Will Rory McIlroy win six or more times? Will anchoring ban be pushed ahead of schedule?

There are plenty of opinions on our staff, which can make for great office debate, but we wanted to keep you in the conversation. Comment below this story to tell us your predictions on these stories and we'll share our favorite ones in the coming days!

Without further adieu ...

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James Achenbach
John Solheim, the CEO of Ping, looks on during the singles matches on Day 3 of the 2011 Solheim Cup at Killeen Castle Golf Club on September 25, 2011.
John Solheim, the CEO of Ping, looks on during the singles matches on Day 3 of the 2011 Solheim Cup at Killeen Castle Golf Club on September 25, 2011.

PHOENIX – John Solheim doesn’t like the word bifurcation, but here’s how serious he is about increasing the enjoyment of golf for all players: The Ping chairman has applied for a United States patent outlining the use of an equipment rating formula to determine a golfer’s handicap.

In other words, different golfers would use different equipment. Their handicaps would then reflect the equipment they used, such as a longer ball or a hotter driver.

Although rulesmakers would label this as bifurcation – the existence of more than one set of rules – Solheim sees it as an effective way to ...

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Bradley S. Klein
Peter Bevacqua is the new CEO of the PGA of America.
Peter Bevacqua is the new CEO of the PGA of America.

NEW YORK -- Ted Bishop, the new president of the PGA of America, is in the middle of a whirlwind month.

No sooner did Bishop, the golf professional and general manager of The Legends Club in Franklin, Ind., become head of his profession’s 27,000-member trade association than he found himself in the middle of an industrywide debate about anchoring the long putter. Then, he had to conclude a search for a new CEO. Next up is naming the captain of the American Ryder Cup team – an announcement that will be made Thursday on NBC’s “Today Show.”

At an ...

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Recent Anchoring Videos

Video: Alex Miceli weighs in on anchoring proposal

Golfweek senior writer Alex Miceli offers his thoughts after Wednesday's press conference by the USGA and R&A.

Video: USGA, R&A explain proposed change

USGA, R&A explain proposed Rules change to prohibit anchored strokes.

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