Proposal would make belly putters go belly-up
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Brace yourself — just not your putter.
In a proposal that would affect golfers from major champs to amateurs, the guardians of the 600-year-old sport want to write a new rule that would outlaw a putting stroke they fear is taking too much skill out of the game.
The U.S. Golf Association and the Royal & Ancient Golf Club said Wednesday they are not banning the belly putter or the longer “broom-handle” putters — only the way they are used. The proposed rule would prohibit golfers at all levels from anchoring a club against their bodies while making a stroke. The rule would not take effect until 2016.
“We believe a player should hold the club away from his body and swing it freely,” USGA executive director Mike Davis said.
Three of the last five major champions used a belly putter.
What concerned the governing bodies, however, was an increasing number of players who were turning to the long putters because they saw it as an advantage.
“Anchored strokes have very rapidly become the preferred option for a growing number of players, and this has caused us to review these strokes and their impact on the game,” R&A chief executive Peter Dawson said. “Our conclusion is that anchored strokes threaten to supplant traditional strokes, which with all their frailties are integral to the longstanding character of our sport.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pirates lose on late Cardinals rally
- Unlike years past, strength of 2014 Steelers could be offense
- Steelers notebook: Polamalu made 1st-time captain; Roethlisberger named for offense
- Steelers formalize practice squad
- Steelers receiver Heyward-Bey looks to make most of chance
- Detained Americans plead U.S. for assistance
- President’s Labor Day appearance heavy on politicking
- Family of Children’s Hospital transplant baby urges feds to change cochlear implants policy
- Democratic gubernatorial nominee in spotlight at Labor Day Parade
- Pressure on European Central Bank grows as economic recovery founders
- Tuesday’s scouting report: Pirates at Cardinals