The governing bodies of golf have finally made two good rule decisions I can get behind. Some pundits feel that the changes will empower the players to cheat, but I say that it forces professionals to play to the level of integrity we expect as viewers. These two rule changes will make pundits take sides and I choose the side of good riddance.
The two rule changes deal with, viewer call in and assessing extra penalties for an incorrectly signed score card. From the R&A Website:
- Discontinue any steps to facilitate or consider viewer call-ins as part of the Rules decision process
- The R&A and the USGA have approved the adoption of a Local Rule, available from 1 January, to eliminate the additional two-stroke penalty for failing to include a penalty on the score card when the player was unaware of the penalty.
“All of the organisations represented on the working group will introduce the Local Rule for 2018 and this score card penalty will be permanently removed when the modernised Rules of Golf take effect on 1 January 2019.”
All I can say is it is about time. I have never liked either rule and I think by having them in place removes the responsibility of all players to be engaged in their competition. Now, each player is responsible for knowing and following the rules. Additionally, as intended, your competitor must call any breach of rules to protect the field.
Golf is a game of integrity and I think that these two rules place more emphasis on players to step up and meet the viewers expectations. Finally two rule changes I can support. How about you?
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!