It’s all go for January after the R&A and USGA published their finalised Rules of Golf. So what’s coming in? Steve Carroll outlines the changes.
Colin Montgomerie Wants ‘Shot Clock’ Introduction
Colin Montgomerie is calling for the introduction of a shot clock in golfing tournaments in an attempt to combat the problem of slow play.
Monty believes that players should be put on the clock from the moment their round begins and insists the measure would prevent the “biggest bugbear” in golf right now.
The delicate issue of slow play has never strayed too far from the radar, and was once again centre of attention at the Open last week when 19-year-old Japanese player Hideki Matsuyama was penalised a shot in the third round after receiving a second warning on the 17th.
The same thing happened when record-breaking 14-year-old Guan Tianling was docked a shot in the second round of the Masters back in April. Interestingly, there has never been a slow play punishment slapped on a high-profile player on any major Tour, sparking more confusing and frustration.
"What I would love to see, as a fast player knowing it would never happen to me, would be for one of the top players to have that shot penalty," said Montgomerie ahead of his Senior Open debut at Royal Birkdale. "Then it would really resonate throughout the rest of the field. If only one of them was finally found out because they are still taking too long,” he added.
"They should be playing in no more than four hours for any round of golf on any course.
"Unfortunately they are given far too long. Why do you have to wait to be slow before you are put on the clock?
"There are 52 referees out there at major championships and they should all have a clock and should be able to put them on the clock on the first tee to ensure they all get around in time."