Anchored Putters II

Well, the USGA and R&A’s long awaited decision on whether they are going to ban the long putter (i.e. anchored putters) is upon us.

They have feinted — or maybe it was just golf gossips fainting — that the announcement was imminent several times since I wrote Anchored Putters back in February.

But now, John Paul Newport at the Wall Street Journal writing in, “Putters Should Just Be Putters: Anchoring a Putter to Your Chest or Stomach May Soon Be Illegal—and It’s About Time,” says that the announcement is expected Wednesday.

My post talked more about the mastery issues associated with anchored putters while Newport’s goes into the history and current arguments from both sides of the great debate. And he indicates that some players are talking about suing for their right to continue to putt with the long putter.

Whichever side you’re on, both of these posts provide a context for what is sure to be a lively and enduring debate after Wednesday’s announcement.

This entry was posted in Mastery, Putting and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Anchored Putters II

  1. Tom Basso says:

    Bill, If anchored putters were so good, then everyone winning the tournaments would have long putters and the top ten of the putting stats on the Tour would have long putters. I’ve made about 100 putters for people, including long putters and I can tell you, without any doubt, that putting technique matters a lot more than which putter you are using. I see guys like Loren Roberts (The Boss of the Moss) fully extended, using his shoulders rolling them in and I’ve also seen Freddy Couples jerk pull the belly putter outside to in with lots of tension in his arms and no tempo to speak of. Adam Scott has figured out the temp and pendulum of the long putter, but now says he’s learned enough about putting to go back and putt a lot better than he used to with the short putter, if they go that way. I think he’s figured out putting and golf authorities should just leave it alone. By the way, I use a short putter and wouldn’t want to change to anything else, because I don’t see an advantage at all.

    • Bill Rand says:

      Thanks for so eloquently staking out that side of the argument, Tom. I completely agree that it does come down to technique: a square putter face accelerating to the hole. So simple to say, so complex in action. It’s the reason I only putt six-foot putts when I’m tuning my stroke: you can see the hole in your peripheral vision, the face and the path of the slow moving putter. And if there is no advantage to the long putter, then their users should be happy to come back into the traditions of the game, a tradition that stopped Sam Snead from straddling the line in its tracks.

  2. Bob Rogers says:

    Ernie Els railed against long putters not too many years ago. Then the big stick transformed him in what would have otherwise been the twilight of his career. Today he says: “As long as it’s legal, I’m going to keep cheating.” A good line that is.