| 4.7°C Dublin

Tiger admits 'evolving game' likely to need two sets of rules

Close

Tiger Woods speaks during a press conference at the Genesis Invitational - Preview Day 2 in Pacific Palisades, California. Photo: Joe Scarnici/Getty Images

Tiger Woods speaks during a press conference at the Genesis Invitational - Preview Day 2 in Pacific Palisades, California. Photo: Joe Scarnici/Getty Images

Getty Images

Tiger Woods speaks during a press conference at the Genesis Invitational - Preview Day 2 in Pacific Palisades, California. Photo: Joe Scarnici/Getty Images

Tiger Woods does not rule out the emergence of a world tour as golf's leaders grapple with huge challenges facing the game.

With the R&A and the USGA determined to halt the ongoing growth in driving distances, two sets of rules on equipment - one for ordinary club golfers and another for the tour stars - may be the only way forward.

Woods admitted that bifurcation (two sets of rules - one for professionals; the other for amateurs) was "certainly on the table" when asked about golf's distance debate as he prepared to chase a record 83rd PGA Tour win in the Genesis Invitational at the Riviera Country Club, Los Angeles.

"The game has evolved and we are running out of property, trying to design golf courses that are 7,800 to 8,000 yards from the back," said Woods (right). "It's difficult.

"On top of that, we are trying to keep the game more enjoyable and get more participation and having the larger heads and more forgiving clubs, it adds to the enjoyment of the game.

"So there is a very delicate ­balancing act we are trying to keep the game at."

He added: "Part of the discussion going forward is do we bifurcate or not. It's probably going to be well after my playing days before we ­figure that out."

As for the proposed new Premier Golf League which hopes to lure 48 of the world's stars to play a world tour for prize money of around $240 million, he admitted he'd been approached personally.

"There is a lot of information we are still looking at and whether it is a reality or not, just like everyone else, we're looking into it," he said.

Asked why an alternative tour ­format might succeed, he replied: "I think that just like all events, you are trying to get the top players to play more collectively. It's one of the reasons why we instituted the World Golf Championships because we were only getting together five times a year.

"So this is a natural evolution where things like this and ideas like this are going to happen going ­forward, whether it is now or any other time in the future."

In amateur golf, Hermitage's Rowan Lester shot a five-under 67 at ­Randpark's Firethorn Course to lie two shots behind local teenager Casey Jarvis (16) at halfway in the South African Amateur Stroke Play Championship.

He sits alone in second place on 11-under par with Mallow's James Sugrue tied for third, five shots off the pace, after a second-round 66.

Irish Independent