Many have asked about the timing of the anchoring ban start should the Rules of Golf change become effective January 1, 2016 as the governing bodies expect.
There may be no better example as to why this could be too long to wait. Keegan Bradley said he was heckled Saturday at the World Challenge (Bob Harig reports) and common sense even before Keegan's claim says that belly putterers will now be treated differently if they continue to use a method headed for a ban.
Even before the incident, this poll question was in the works for Monday based on the most frequent reaction to the ban: why wait so long?
When should the anchoring ban start? (Note: the October 7, 2013 option is the first event of the 2013-14 PGA Tour schedule. There is certainly the possibility that Commissioner Image Over Substance may consider expediting the ban to avoid having some of his players branded as cheaters.)
Full disclosure, I voted January 1, 2014 because (A) the Rules of Golf should not revolve around the PGA Tour, especially its product diluting year-round madness, and (B) this gives all golfers a year to adjust.
**The USGA saw fit to address the incident. For Immediate Release...
STATEMENT FROM USGA ON SPECTATOR INCIDENT AT WORLD CHALLENGE
Far Hills, N.J. (December 2, 2012) – The United States Golf Association (USGA) today issued the following statement regarding yesterday’s incident at the World Challenge in which a spectator called Keegan Bradley’s use of an anchored stroke as “cheating.” The incident follows the Nov. 28 announcement by the USGA and The R&A proposing changes to the Rules of Golf that would prohibit anchoring the club in making a stroke. The proposed Rule change would take effect on January 1, 2016, in accordance with the regular four-year cycle for changes to the Rules of Golf.
“This is a deplorable incident, and there is no place in our game for this kind of behavior. As we noted when announcing proposed Rule 14-1b, it has been and remains entirely within the Rules of Golf for players to anchor the club while making a stroke. There should not be a shred of criticism of such players or any qualification or doubt about their achievements, and we think that it is inappropriate even to suggest anything to the contrary. Rule changes address the future and not the past. Up until now and until such time as a Rule change were to be implemented, golfers using an anchored stroke will have been playing by the Rules of Golf.”
“We are sorry that Keegan had to experience this unfounded criticism from an obviously uneducated spectator. Instead, Keegan and other PGA Tour professionals should be commended for their maturity and grace in managing through a proposed change to the Rules of Golf.”
“While we understand that the proposed Rules change would cause some short-term angst, we believe the new Rule would serve the long-term best interest of the game.”