Dawson was adamant that the controversy surrounding long putters hadn’t detracted from Els winning a dramatic event – he came from six shots back with nine holes to play as Scott dropped shots at each of the last four holes – to claim the Claret Jug for a second time.
“No, absolutely not,” he said. “The championship is conducted under the rules of play at the time, and it doesn’t detract in any way from the winner as long as he obeys the rules of play at the time.
“Bobby Jones used concave-faced clubs for some of his major championships. They were outlawed later. Bobby Jones’ victories are in no way demeaned as a result of that and I see this in exactly the same way.”
At Lytham, in a field of 156, Els was among 16 players wielding a belly putter while Scott was one of 27 using a long one.
“At one tournament last year, the R&A reported 21 per cent of players had long putters in their bag.”
The first two or three years I played in the Doral I actually thought it was named for a cigarette or a flower you put on a wreath. Of course I eventually found out the name came from humans. It came from Al Kaskel, who built the resort, and his wife, Doris. I guess Al Kaskel could have called it Aldor, but putting his wife’s name first obviously made it sound better, and may have even prevented an argument at home. DAN JENKINS (as Bobby Joe Grooves)