Golf’s governing bodies have begun rolling out the new and improved Rules of Golf but not everyone is thrilled with the new guidelines. One PGA Tour player, Mackenzie Hughes, took his complaints to Twitter.
Hughes, a Canadian pro who has onecareer victory on Tour, he wrote that while he supports some of the changes, “most of them missed the mark.” One rule that makes Hughes’s naughty list is the change to the height from which a drop is to be made. Formerly, drops were to be made from shoulder height, but players must now drop from knee height. Hughes gave specifics on his criticism, writing, “I just think dropping it from shoulder height was fine to begin with.
What problem did we solve by changing it to knee height?” One fan replied arguing that the problem with dropping from shoulder height is that the distance is radically different for a short person and a tall person, to which Hughes shot back, “If that’s what we’re worried about then there are bigger problems.
Do you think that foot is drastically changing your drop? I don’t think it is.” Another change he takes exception with is the rule governing the use of damaged clubs on the course. Under the new rule, a player can continue playing a damaged club, but they cannot replace the club during the round unless it was damaged by an outside agency. Hughes’s tweet set off a stream of replies from opinionated golfers.
Even Hughes fellow Canadian Tour pro Graham DeLaet got in on the action. DeLaet announced his displeasure that the governing bodies failed to clarify the anchored putting rule. “How they didn’t address the anchoring definition is absurd. It’s the only thing that ACTUALLY matters.” It seems the concerned pro’s biggest beef is that the aim of the changes was to simplify the game, but they’ve actually made the rules more confusing.
“We all know how to speed up play, but will the powers that be ever really do anything about it?” I think they were trying to simplify the game but after watching them explain the new rules I don’t think they accomplished that. With the implementation of the new rules right around the corner, it’s likely we’ll hear a lot more hot takes in the days and weeks to come, especially once the Tour season gets underway in earnest this month.