Sunday 17 December 2017

Mickelson in sue threat over McCarron 'cheat' claim

Mark Reason

AN angry Phil Mickelson has threatened to sue for slander after the controversy over his old wedge intensified last night.

His move comes after Scott McCarron accused him of cheating. The PGA Tour is to hold an emergency meeting to try to defuse the row.

The fuss is all to do with a new rule brought in by the governing bodies this year banning the use of clubs with 'super-spinning' U-shaped grooves.

There was just one problem. In 1990 the manufacturers, Ping, filed a lawsuit against the US Golf Association. Under the terms of that settlement the USGA was not allowed to retrospectively ban Ping clubs, so the Ping Eye-2 irons of the late '80s are still legal.

Those clubs have grooves that spin the ball a lot. The grooves do not conform with the new rule, but they are legal because of a pre-existing lawsuit. Mickelson took advantage of the loophole and stuck an old Ping Eye-2 in the bag.

McCarron, who sits on the US PGA Tour's player advisory committee, said of Mickelson: "It's cheating and I'm appalled Phil has put it in play."

Mickelson retorted: "Well, we all have our opinions, but a line was crossed, and I was publicly slandered, and because of that I'll have to let other people handle that.

"I agree that the rule is a terrible rule. But it's not up to me or any other player to interpret what the interpretation of the rule is or the spirit of the rule."

Irish Independent

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