Thursday 27 November 2014

Belly-putter ban major boost for McIlroy as world No1 welcomes ‘level playing field’

Karl MacGinty

Published 29/11/2012 | 05:00

Rory McIlroy

RORY McILROY is delighted world golf's ruling bodies have decided to throw out the 'anchor'.

"Fully agree with the anchoring ban," the world No 1 tweeted after the USGA and R&A unveiled Rule 14-1, sounding a death-knell for the belly-putter.

"Better image for the game of golf, skill and nerves are all part of the game," McIlroy continued. "Level playing field in 2016."

The Holywood star playfully added another tweet an hour later with a picture of himself as a two-year-old on a beach (right), which was accompanied by the caption: "The first and last time I used a belly putter!"

McIlroy's prospects of adding to his two Major titles should be boosted by the new rule, which prohibits deliberate anchoring of any club to the body. It'll come into effect on January 1, 2016, at the start of world golf's next four-year rules cycle.

Tiger Woods this week argued that an anchored putter does not produce a true golf stroke and, by ensuring wrists and hands to remain still, helps eliminate nervous twitches.

Padraig Harrington has little sympathy for those who'll have to readjust after years using long putters, saying: "It's hard to think you'd find anybody in the professional game using a long putter who didn't know this day was coming."

Irish Independent

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