Ready golf is a huge topic and continues to garner attention around the world. The governing bodies are trying to speed up play to attract new and younger players to the links. I think this is an admiral goal and see some changes that will help reach their objective. But, there comes a time where ready golf changes the pace of play so much that players cannot attain a groove or tempo to their game. And marking their ball on the green is a perfect example.
Recently, I had a response of Pete Robbins from White Dragon Golf who said that his course recently adopted ready golf everywhere on the course including the green. So, players could be putting when someone is raking a sand trap, in theory, or replacing a club to pull out their putter. In some cases, this does not even offer the opportunity for players to mark their ball. I think this is taking ready golf too far, but I am sure the new rule interpretation will evolve into a happy medium as time progresses.
I met up with friends on the 10th hole of Osprey Links Golf Course as Pat was putting, I saw this:
Now, Pat has the opportunity to have his opponent mark the ball, but he stepped up and made his shot anyway. The interesting thing to me was that his opponent was waiting for Pat to ask him to mark the ball and did not think to do it immediately. This is a new aspect of ready golf that has crept into the game over the past year or so. In the past, and rightfully so, the ball by the hole would have been marked automatically without any hesitation.
I have to admit that I am guilty of the same thing. Both putting with the ball in my field of vision and not immediately marking my ball around the cup. I think that with the pin in rule, I as golfer have become lazy and lost a bit of golf etiquette. This is my bad and it needs to stop.
So, I am going to revert back to my old ways and mark my ball all the time. There is a benefit to this practice of always marking our golf ball and this quick video from Kathy Hart Wood Golf explains it perfectly:
I suggest that ready golf is changing the basic etiquette norms on the golf course. Some for the good and others, not so much. Regardless of where you stand, I think always marking your ball on the green is a good practice and I am going to start doing it today!
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!