Adam Scott has laid into the new Rules of Golf, saying the sport is ‘becoming the laughing stock’.
In an interview with the New York Times, the 2013 Masters champion questioned a number of the changes made by the R&A and USGA, starting with the knee-high drop.
“They’ve just written more gray areas into the game that were not necessary,” said the Aussie, who added that he won’t make a drop without asking his caddie or a nearby official if he has the height right.
Then there’s the issue of putting with the flagstick in. Scott himself is an advocate of it and that has showed in his ranking for strokes gained putting this season.
He was ranked 165th on the PGA Tour in the category last year while, so far this season, he is ranked 26th. You might think that would prevent him complaining about the changes, but not so.
“To be honest, it almost changes the whole aim of the game,” he added. “It’s to hit the pin, not hole the putt. It takes speed out of your head so much. It even takes some reading of the green out.”
Finally, he took aim at the caddie alignment rule, which the R&A and USGA had to release amendments to following two very high-profile penalties involving Haotong Li on the European Tour and Denny McCarthy on the PGA Tour, the latter of which was rescinded by the tour after widespread player outrage.
Although Jay Monahan, the PGA Tour commissioner, said he felt proud of how quickly the alignment rule confusion was addressed, Scott disagreed.
“We haven’t had a lot of changes in golf in the history of the game, and we’ve had a lot recently — rules changing weekly in some cases — and it’s crazy,” he said. “I think we’re becoming the laughing stock.”