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Golf-Bradley has reason to shine at Sherwood, Watney leads

THOUSAND OAKS, California, Nov 29 (Reuters) – American Keegan Bradley struck a timely blow for users of the beleaguered belly putter by charging into contention with a three-under-par 69 in Thursday’s first round at the World Challenge.

Just one day after golf’s rulemakers proposed a ban on long putters being anchored to the body, Bradley proved his lofty status as a player is underpinned by his all-round game as he reached 17 of 18 greens in regulation at Sherwood Country Club.

While compatriot Nick Watney set the pace with a five-birdie 67 in the elite 18-player event hosted by Tiger Woods, Bradley mixed four birdies with a lone bogey to end a damp, overcast day level with Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell and Jim Furyk.

Five-times champion Woods, who ended a two-year title drought with a one-shot victory here 12 months ago, was a further stroke back on 70 with fellow Americans Bo Van Pelt and Webb Simpson.

“Today was awesome,” Bradley, who became the first player to win a major using a belly putter at the 2011 PGA Championship, told reporters.

“I did have a bad break on the last hole, but I played so solidly all day, that’s the only green I missed. If I could have made a few more putts, I probably could have been a lot lower.”

Bradley marred his round with a bogey at the par-four 18th where his tee shot ended up against a tree root beside a small rock to the right of the fairway.

“It was a bad break, but also if it didn’t hit that root, it probably would have rolled all the way back down that hill. It was a good day, and I’ll make a better swing on 18 tomorrow.”

EXTRA MOTIVATION

Bradley said he had gained extra motivation for the round from Wednesday’s announcement by golf’s ruling bodies that they wanted to outlaw the practice of anchoring by 2016 in order to preserve the “skill and challenge” of putting.

“Yeah, absolutely,” he added. “It would be great to go off and really play well here. I’ve been catching such flak on Twitter and these other places, it would be good to kind of quiet them a little bit.

“I had a guy yesterday telling me to send my application in to Burger King for 2016. I feel like the USGA (United States Golf Association) has really put an X on our back and really shined a light on us, and I don’t know if that’s exactly fair.

“When we started putting with it (the belly putter), they were legal, and they still are. It’s a sticky situation, and I hope people can see through that. It always feels good to play well, but this feels better almost.”

Woods, who is seeking his fourth victory this year after triumphing three times on the PGA Tour, was delighted to move into contention despite not playing at his best.

“I didn’t hit the ball very good today and made a few good par putts to keep the round going,” he said after mixing three birdies with a bogey.

“I kept myself in the tournament. Could have easily shot myself out of the tournament but I kept myself in it.”

Asked if he was surprised only four players had shot under 70, Woods replied: “No, it’s still difficult out there. The wind is puffing around and it’s all different directions. The greens are soft, and it’s hard to get the ball close.” (Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes; Editing by Frank Pingue)

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Golf-Bradley has reason to shine at Sherwood, Watney leads

Golf-World Challenge first round scores

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Golf-World Challenge first round scores

Parry cruises to victory at European Tour school

(Reuters) – John Parry became the fourth consecutive English winner of the European Tour‘s qualifying school when he romped to a four-shot victory at the PGA Catalunya course in Girona, northern Spain on Thursday.

Parry, a former tour champion at the 2010 Vivendi Cup in Paris, shot a two-under-par 70 in the sixth and final round to record a 19-under tally of 409.

“I knew I had my tour card sewn up before today started but I was going for the win,” said the 26-year-old after following compatriots Simon Khan (2009), Simon Wakefield (2010) and David Dixon (2011) as school winners.

“I’ve been playing like this for the last couple of months but the difference this week was my putting.”

A total of 28 players clinched their tour cards for the 2012-13 season including Swede Mikael Lundberg (69) who finished as runner-up on 413.

Scot Gary Orr, 45, winner of the British Masters and the Portuguese Open in 2000, became the oldest player to secure a card, 20 years after he first achieved the feat.

The new season kicks off with the Nelson Mandela Championship in South Africa next week.

(Writing by Tony Jimenez; editing by Toby Davis)

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Parry cruises to victory at European Tour school

Golf-Parry cruises to victory at European Tour school

Nov 29 (Reuters) – John Parry became the fourth consecutive English winner of the European Tour‘s qualifying school when he romped to a four-shot victory at the PGA Catalunya course in Girona, northern Spain on Thursday.

Parry, a former tour champion at the 2010 Vivendi Cup in Paris, shot a two-under-par 70 in the sixth and final round to record a 19-under tally of 409.

“I knew I had my tour card sewn up before today started but I was going for the win,” said the 26-year-old after following compatriots Simon Khan (2009), Simon Wakefield (2010) and David Dixon (2011) as school winners.

“I’ve been playing like this for the last couple of months but the difference this week was my putting.”

A total of 28 players clinched their tour cards for the 2012-13 season including Swede Mikael Lundberg (69) who finished as runner-up on 413.

Scot Gary Orr, 45, winner of the British Masters and the Portuguese Open in 2000, became the oldest player to secure a card, 20 years after he first achieved the feat.

The new season kicks off with the Nelson Mandela Championship in South Africa next week. (Writing by Tony Jimenez; editing by Toby Davis)

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Golf-Parry cruises to victory at European Tour school

Parry romps to Q-School victory as 28 earn European Tour cards for 2013

GIRONA, Spain — John Parry of England secured his return to the European Tour in swashbuckling style Thursday by winning the Q-School Final Stage by four shots courtesy of a 2-under par 70 in the sixth and final round.

The 26-year-old began the day four shots clear and his lead was never threatened at PGA Catalunya Resort in northern Spain, where 28 players earned their playing rights for the 2013 European Tour.

EUROPEAN Q-SCHOOL

The 156-man field is playing four rounds before cutting the field to the top 70 and ties for the final two rounds. The top 25 finishers and ties after six rounds will receive 2013 European Tour cards.

Saturday recapSunday recapMonday recapTuesday recapWednesday recapThursday recap

The gruelling 108-hole event has become synonymous with drama over the years, and this edition was no different, providing emotions at either end of the spectrum. Young Englishman Chris Lloyd saved the best until last with a 5-under 67 to make a late jump into the qualifying spots, while Scotland’s Callum Macaulay holed fantastic putts on the 17th and 18th greens to finish on 6 under par, one shot inside the mark.

However, another Scotsman, George Murray, was in despair after missing a short putt on the last, a double bogey meaning he missed out by one shot.

At the top of the leaderboard, though, Parry soared to a convincing win, posting four birdies and two bogeys to finish four ahead of Mikael Lundberg, who closed with a 69, and six clear of Andy Sullivan, who repeated his 2011 performance in taking third place.

“I’m delighted,” said Parry, who won the 2010 Vivendi Cup but then lost his card the following season after finishing 126th in The Race to Dubai. “I knew I had my card sewn up before today started, but I was going for the win and I’m happy to have got the job done.”

Parry, who is the fourth consecutive English winner of the Final Stage, following Simon Khan (2009), Simon Wakefield (2010) and David Dixon (2011), believes the presence of his fitness trainer during the tournament was an important factor in the victory, as was the decision to arrive at PGA Catalunya Resort six days before the first round for some intensive practice.

“It’s been great having my trainer here and he has guided me through the week,” he said. “It’s easy to think with six rounds to play the down-time should be spent relaxing, but I’ve been doing weights every evening this week and I feel great. Even today I felt very fresh.”

Lundberg was five shots back at the start of the final round, and admitted he was just relieved to be finished after a long and tiring week.

“I started really nicely, but lost a bit of concentration on the tenth and 11th, where I had my only two bogeys of the day,” he said. “I knew it was going to be difficult to catch John, so I’m just happy to take second place and finish the week with a Tour card. It’s a relief.”

Peter Erofejeff shared fourth spot with Argentine Estanislao Goya and German amateur Moritz Lampert, and the Finn was glad to be able to return home in time for the birth of his first child.

“The baby was due yesterday and I agreed with my wife that if it came early I would stay here and play. So I’m very glad it hasn’t happened yet,” he said. “I’m absolutely delighted and it’s going to be a very exciting few months coming up.”

Former Ryder Cup player Oliver Wilson finished with a level-par 72 and a 3-under aggregate score, two shy of the required mark. Scotsman Gary Orr became the oldest player to win a card at the Qualifying School Final Stage, at 45 years and 202 days, 20 years after he first achieved the feat.

The players earning their 2013 cards are:
1. John Parry -19
2. Mikael lundberg -15
3. Andy Sullivan -13
4. Estanislao Goya 11
4. Peter Erofejeff -11
4. Moritz Lampert -11
7. Daniel Gaunt -10
7. Matthew Southgate -10
9. Eduardo de la Riva -9
9. Richard McEvoy -9
9. Matthew Nixon -9
9. Anthony snobeck -9
9. Mikko Korhonen -9
14. Matteo DelPodio -8
14. Bjorn Akesson -8
16. Chris Lloyd -7
16. Michael Jonzon -7
16. David Higgins -7
16. Morten Orum Madsen -7
20. Sam Little -6
20. Callum Macauley -6
20. Oscar Floren -6
20. Joakim Lagergren -6
24. Alexander Levy -5
24. Scott Arnold -5
24. Lasse Jensen -5
24. Carlos Del Moral -5
24. Gary Orr -5 18

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Parry romps to Q-School victory as 28 earn European Tour cards for 2013

Colsaerts and Haas lead Nedbank by one over defending champ Westwood

SUN CITY, South Africa — Bill Haas nearly escaped with a fine score on his Sun City debut, bogeying two of his last three holes to slip back into a share of the first-round lead with Ryder Cup star Nicolas Colsaerts at the Nedbank Golf Challenge on Thursday.

Haas made five birdies and one bogey to move 4 under and two clear before slips at 16 and 18 pegged him back.

NEDBANK CHALLENGE

The 12-man all-star field is battling for the $1.25 milion winner’s purse in the granddaddy of golf’s high-profile off-season exhibitions.

What’s in the winners’ bagsGolf on TVWestwood looks for strong showing to salvage seasonSchwartzel’s game ‘on the up’ as rib injury healsThursday recap

American Haas and Belgium’s Colsaerts — also a Nedbank rookie — eventually carded 2-under 70s to lead by one from South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen, Scotland’s Paul Lawrie and two-time defending champion Lee Westwood of England.

Haas could have had a 68 in his first competitive round at the challenging Gary Player Country Club, only for the course’s narrow fairways and unforgiving rough to snare him on his final few holes. He needed to sink a 10-foot putt for his bogey on the last after fighting his way out of the stubborn kikuyu grass rough.

“Happy to make that last putt, a 6 on the last would have really stung,” Haas said. “Happy with 2 under but it would have been nice to shoot a couple more (birdies). Because it’s playing tough out there.”

Westwood, recently untouchable in Sun City after back-to-back wins in 2010 and 2011, had three birdies and two bogeys in his 1-under 71 as he seeks to become the first player to win three consecutive Nedbank titles.

Justin Rose dropped shots on three straight holes on the back nine for a 1-over 73 and place 11th out of 12, a rude awakening for the Englishman after his course-record 62 at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai last weekend.

Only South African Garth Mulroy is below Rose after two double bogeys in his 75.

Colsaerts, who is one of seven members of Europe’s triumphant Ryder Cup team in the 12-man field at Sun City, dropped just one shot on the par-4 8th in his 2-under 70.

Behind Colsaerts and Haas, Oosthuizen mixed four birdies with three bogeys for his 71. Lawrie parred 11 holes in a row to finish 1 under and in a share of third with Oosthuizen and Westwood.

Francesco Molinari was level par despite starting with a birdie on the first to be one of five players sharing sixth. Former World No. 1 Martin Kaymer, Peter Hanson, Charl Schwartzel and Carl Pettersson — with his long putter — also made 72s.

Haas’s father Jay is playing in the seniors’ Nedbank Champions Challenge at Sun City, where he was 1 under for second place behind Bernhard Langer after their opening round.

The last time the Haas pair was here was in 2003, when Bill came to watch his father play but ended up ignoring most of the golf to go on safari, see lions and crocodiles and to do some water skiing at the Sun City casino resort.

“I only watched like two holes of golf (in 2003) so a lot of the holes I’ve seen for the first time,” Haas junior said. “At one point (on Thursday) I was on seven green and my dad … was on 13 green, so I could see him. It is neat to feel like his peer this week.”

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Colsaerts and Haas lead Nedbank by one over defending champ Westwood

A ban on anchors, a long way to go

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (AP) — The putt was meaningless because it was the final hole of a pro-am in what amounts to an 18-man exhibition at the end of the year, even though ranking points are available at the World Challenge. But it was hard not to look at the end of the putter pressed into the belly of Keegan Bradley.

The decision to ban the anchor stroke used for belly putters and broom-handle putters was not because of Bradley, even though he became the face of a style that was gaining popularity, not to mention credibility.

Bradley became the first player to win a major using the belly putter when he rammed in a 35-foot birdie putt on the 17th at Atlanta Athletic Club in 2011 during a remarkable comeback. It was in the news conference after the PGA Championship that Bradley spoke about a number of players on the Nationwide Tour who were using belly putters. The next year, Webb Simpson and Ernie Els won majors with a belly putter.

The U.S. Golf Association and Royal & Ancient, who announced Wednesday a proposed rule that would ban anchoring the club to the body, said the major champions were only part of what got their attention. Mike Davis of the USGA and Peter Dawson of the R&A both spoke to a spike in number of players using such putting strokes, how it trickled down to younger golfers, and their concern that the stroke was taking too much of the skill out of the game.

Players could still use a broom-handle or belly putter — as long as it is not pressed against their body to create the effect of a hinge.

“We believe a player should hold the club away from his body and swing it freely,” Davis said. “Golf is a game of skill and challenge, and we think that’s an important part of it.”

What’s next?

As for the rule, the governing bodies will take comments over the next three months to see if it needs to be changed, scrapped or whether the proposal is fine the way it is. Then, it would be approved by the organizations, though it would not take effect until 2016.

What’s next for Bradley?

“I’m going to have to really in the next couple of years figure out a way that’s going to be best for me to putt,” Bradley said.

He might end up shaving a few inches off the putter so the stroke is similar, except that it doesn’t press against his stomach. Fred Couples has a belly putter that rests against his stomach, but the butt of the club moves freely. It is not hinged. Couples was not sure if that would be legal under the new rule, though he could just imagine the number of phone calls if he was shown on TV using that stroke.

Then again, the odds of the 53-year-old Couples even playing the Champions Tour in 2016 was enough to make him laugh.

U.S. Open champion Webb Simpson already has been using a short putter while at home, and he said he would continue to make the transition and go to the conventional putter when he feels comfortable with it. Bradley has been using a belly putter since he was at college, and he laments the five years of practice with it going to waste.

“Who knows? Maybe there’s some way to putt better,” Bradley said. “I see myself finding a way to putt.”

Bradley and Simpson are in a difficult spot, for neither wants to look like a group of dissenters. Both said they have respect for the USGA and R&A, and Bradley wanted to make that clear Wednesday at Sherwood Country Club when he said, “I do understand the USGA is trying to protect the game. I knew they’re not doing something maliciously to hurt me or other guys.”

But this already is shaping up to be a divisive issue, from industry leaders worried about the growth of golf to players who have been using these putters for years.

Carl Pettersson of Sweden and Tim Clark of South Africa have used broom-handle putters all their careers, and they have talked about a possible legal recourse. Neither could be reached for comment. Pettersson was in South Africa for the Nedbank Challenge and did not return a phone call.

“Any competitive player likes to have an extra advantage,” Matt Kuchar said. “I think you’re going find anyone using the short putter is glad, and anyone using the belly putter or long putter is not happy.”

Kuchar used a mid-length putter that rested against his left arm when he won The Players Championship. That style is OK.

Couples wasn’t sure golf needed such a rule. His argument is that if the anchored stroke was that much of an advantage, everyone would be using it. He somehow managed to work Rick Barry of the Golden State Warriors into the conversation.

He referred to him as one of the greatest free-throw shooters in NBA history, famous for his underhand shot at the foul line.

“Do you see other guys copying him?” Couples said. “Is Keegan Bradley the best putter on tour? Is Webb? So it’s a look. They can say all they want, but it’s a look. An advantage? You think guys out here are dumb? What’s an advantage? You would think if this was such an advantage, everyone would be using it.”

None of the top 20 players on the PGA Tour’s most reliable putting statistic used an anchored putting stroke.

“In my opinion, they haven’t screwed up golf yet, and I don’t think this will screw it up,” Couples said. “But I feel bad for Keegan Bradley, because I’ll tell you what: If they banned it tomorrow and we played a tournament, I think I’ll be a better player than Keegan. And I don’t think that’s fair.”

In the meantime, the World Challenge gets under way Thursday as the final event of the year for Woods, and the last chance for this 18-man field to earn ranking points. Some will go to the Shark Shootout next week in Florida. The others won’t be seen again until next year, either in Hawaii or the desert.

The anchored putting stroke will come again. The debate most likely won’t end anytime soon.

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A ban on anchors, a long way to go

Snedeker to end ‘crazy year’ with No. 1 hopes

THOUSAND OAKS, California (Reuters) – Brandt Snedeker will end what has been a “crazy year” of golfing success at this week’s World Challenge with one eye already turned toward a 2013 campaign of even greater achievement.

The fast-talking American triumphed twice on the 2012 PGA Tour en route to becoming the U.S. circuit’s FedExCup champion and, having broken into the world’s top 10, he has set his sights on becoming number one.

“It’s very doable,” the ever-smiling Snedeker told reporters at Sherwood Country Club on Wednesday while preparing for Thursday’s opening round.

“Look where I jumped from in the world rankings this year, getting to where I am now.

“Having another year like this year next year and I can really get up there. To get to No. 1 in the world you’ve got to be more consistent. You look at the way (top-ranked) Rory (McIlroy) is playing right now.

“He’s not only winning but he’s giving himself a chance to win almost every week, and that’s huge. That’s what you have to do to be No. 1 in the world.”

Snedeker was ranked 38th heading into this year but has soared to 10th place this week after recording seven top-10s on the 2012 PGA Tour, including victories at the Farmers Insurance Open and the Tour Championship.

“It’s been a crazy year needless to say, to have two wins and winning the FedExCup was obviously a huge, huge year for me, a career year so far,” he said.

“I told people at the beginning of the year it was going to be the best year of my career and some people probably didn’t believe me but I knew it would, and it ended up being so.

“I really feel like next year is going to be even better. I’m not trying to do anything different next year, not trying to reinvent the wheel.”

Snedeker held off a late charge by fellow American Ryan Moore to win the season-ending Tour Championship by three shots in September, along with FedExCup honors and the eye-popping $10 million bonus.

However, he has not yet come to terms with the enormity of that mind-boggling windfall.

“I never check my bank accounts, and I checked it the day it (the bonus) was supposed to hit,” Snedeker grinned. “It was just crazy.

“It doesn’t sink in. It still hasn’t sunk in, and it’s two months later.”

Snedeker, making his first appearance in the elite field of 18 at the Tiger Woods hosted World Challenge, will tee off with fellow American Matt Kuchar in Thursday’s opening round.

(Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes; Editing by Julian Linden)

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Snedeker to end ‘crazy year’ with No. 1 hopes

Golf-Snedeker to end ‘crazy year’ with No. 1 hopes

THOUSAND OAKS, California, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Brandt Snedeker will end what has been a “crazy year” of golfing success at this week’s World Challenge with one eye already turned toward a 2013 campaign of even greater achievement.

The fast-talking American triumphed twice on the 2012 PGA Tour en route to becoming the U.S. circuit’s FedExCup champion and, having broken into the world’s top 10, he has set his sights on becoming number one.

“It’s very doable,” the ever-smiling Snedeker told reporters at Sherwood Country Club on Wednesday while preparing for Thursday’s opening round.

“Look where I jumped from in the world rankings this year, getting to where I am now.

“Having another year like this year next year and I can really get up there. To get to No. 1 in the world you’ve got to be more consistent. You look at the way (top-ranked) Rory (McIlroy) is playing right now.

“He’s not only winning but he’s giving himself a chance to win almost every week, and that’s huge. That’s what you have to do to be No. 1 in the world.”

Snedeker was ranked 38th heading into this year but has soared to 10th place this week after recording seven top-10s on the 2012 PGA Tour, including victories at the Farmers Insurance Open and the Tour Championship.

“It’s been a crazy year needless to say, to have two wins and winning the FedExCup was obviously a huge, huge year for me, a career year so far,” he said.

“I told people at the beginning of the year it was going to be the best year of my career and some people probably didn’t believe me but I knew it would, and it ended up being so.

“I really feel like next year is going to be even better. I’m not trying to do anything different next year, not trying to reinvent the wheel.”

Snedeker held off a late charge by fellow American Ryan Moore to win the season-ending Tour Championship by three shots in September, along with FedExCup honours and the eye-popping $10 million bonus.

However, he has not yet come to terms with the enormity of that mind-boggling windfall.

“I never check my bank accounts, and I checked it the day it (the bonus) was supposed to hit,” Snedeker grinned. “It was just crazy.

“It doesn’t sink in. It still hasn’t sunk in, and it’s two months later.”

Snedeker, making his first appearance in the elite field of 18 at the Tiger Woods hosted World Challenge, will tee off with fellow American Matt Kuchar in Thursday’s opening round. (Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes; Editing by Julian Linden)

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Golf-Snedeker to end ‘crazy year’ with No. 1 hopes

Anchoring ban proposal welcomed by most players at Sherwood

THOUSAND OAKS, California (Reuters) – Wednesday’s proposal by golf’s rulemakers for a ban on long putters being anchored to the body was mainly welcomed by players at this week’s World Challenge, though some expressed disappointment.

In a bid to preserve the “skill and challenge” of putting, the Royal and Ancient (R&A) and United States Golf Association (USGA) said they wanted to outlaw the practice of anchoring by 2016.

While three of the last five major champions have used long ‘belly’ putters, the move by the game’s rulemakers has been prompted mainly by the number of younger players now taking advantage of anchoring.

“I think it’s in the best nature of the game,” American Matt Kuchar, who uses a mid-length putter, told Reuters while preparing for Thursday’s opening round at Sherwood Country Club.

“The game was not intended to be played that way (anchoring the putter). The game was intended to be played in a way that you control both ends of the club with every shot.”

Intriguingly, Kuchar uses a putting stroke which would not be outlawed by the rulemakers’ proposal since his putter rests against his left arm and not against his chest, stomach or chin.

The proposed Rule 14-1b states, in part: “The club is anchored ‘directly’ when the player intentionally holds the club or a gripping hand in contact with any part of his body, except that the player may hold the club or a gripping hand against a hand or forearm.”

American Keegan Bradley, the first player to win a major using the anchoring technique when he triumphed at the 2011 PGA Championship, was among those unhappy about the likely change.

“In the next couple of years, I’m really going to have to figure out a way that’s best for me to putt,” he told Reuters. “I’m obviously not happy with the ruling, but I respect the USGA.

“They make the rules, and I’ll adjust appropriately. I’m going to accept the challenge and hopefully do well when they do ban it.”

COUPLES CONFUSION

Former world number one and 1992 Masters champion Fred Couples expressed some dissatisfaction with the proposal, along with confusion over the precise definition of anchoring.

“I do use a belly putter and when I started I used it for my back,” American Couples, who has limited his playing schedule in recent seasons due to lingering back injuries, told Reuters.

“I push back into my belly and lean over to a certain point. Now will it (the putter) touch my belly once in a while? Yeah, but it’s not really anchored so I don’t really know if that is affected by the rule.

“So far they (rulemakers) haven’t screwed up the game of golf, and I don’t think this will screw it up. But I feel bad for a lot of the younger players who have never done it (putt) any other way.”

Australian Jason Day, who uses a conventional ‘short’ putter, preferred to hedge his bets.

“I’m right down on the middle on this,” he told Reuters with a smile. “I don’t want to make anyone angry.

“I’m just going to leave it to them (the rulemakers) to make a decision, which they have, but I know there’s a lot of guys that are going to be angry about it. That’s how it goes.”

Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell, the 2010 U.S. Open champion, applauded the move by the R&A and the USGA.

“It was the only decision that could be made, and no one is really all that surprised,” he told reporters after taking part in Wednesday’s pro-am competition.

“It’s a very considered and intelligent sort of decision, I think, from the R&A and the USGA. It’s the right call. This is an ‘integrity of the putting stroke’ issue.

“Anchoring has become a way of putting, teaching pros are putting long putters into the hands of kids, and I think that the putting stroke is kind of moving in a wrong direction sort of for the future, really.”

The proposal by the R&A and USGA will be discussed by players and the golfing community before being implemented.

(Editing by Ian Ransom)

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Anchoring ban proposal welcomed by most players at Sherwood

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