Bubba Watson and Bryson DeChambeau join calls against plan to modify golf balls and limit distances

Bryson DeChambeau is one of golf’s long hitters and he’s not happy with a proposed plan to use balls that limit driving distance. (John David Mercer – USA TODAY Sports)

It looks like LIV golfers and PGA Tour golfers have found a little common ground.

Both Bubba Watson and Bryson DeChambeau, along with Justin Thomas, railed against the USGA and R&A’s recent proposal to introduce modified golf balls designed to limit distance.

“The sport is at an all-time high so let’s not mess with it,” Watson said ahead of LIV Golf’s second event of the season this week in Arizona. via the Palm Beach Post. “Let’s just keep growing it.”

Two of the golf federations this week announced a plan that would force top golfers to use modified balls designed to limit distance off the tee. The balls would have to adjust to not exceed the total 320-yard distance in carry and roll. The plan would reduce driver spacing by about 15 meters and only affect the highest level of the sport.

The USGA and R&A, which host the US Open and British Open championships, respectively, have said distances from the tee are increasing at about 1 yard per year and that this plan, which would begin in 2026, would keep the game sustainable for decades to come .

It’s unclear if the PGA Tour or other leagues would adopt this rule change. If they don’t, it’s something that could only be required at the US Open and British Open.

Thomas said ahead of this week’s Valspar championship the plan was “so bad for the game of golf.”

“I don’t know how many of you play golf here on a regular basis, but I promise none of you have come off the golf course and said, you know, I’m hitting so far and straight today that golf is fair isn’t even fun anymore said Thomas. “Well, no, that’s not — it’s just not the reality.”

Watson cited DeChambeau, who is one of the longest hitters in the sport. DeChambeau led the Tour in driving distance in both 2019 and 2020, setting a record at the time averaging 322.1 yards from tee.

“Just because you’re hitting it further doesn’t mean it’s going to be straighter,” Watson said. “I’m not trying to throw Bryson under the bus, but Bryson tried to do something, he did it, but he dialed it back a little bit. He still hits it further than everyone else, but he dialed it back a little because he realized your failures are further away…because I’ve been at this for a while, my failures are further away.”

Bubba Watson

Bubba Watson and Bryson DeChambeau joined Justin Thomas in criticizing a new plan to limit distances off the tee. (Hector Vivas/Getty Images)

This season, golfers on the Tour are averaging just over 297 yards per shot. Rory McIlroy is averaging a tour-best 326.6 yards per ride and Thomas is averaging 305.6 yards, the 40th best on the tour.

While he understands the logic for this on paper, DeChambeau didn’t hold back when he criticized the plan.

“Look, if they’re doing it in such a way that it only affects the top end, I understand the rationale,” DeChambeau said LIV Golf. “But I think it’s the most terrifying thing you can do to the game of golf. It’s not about rolling back golf balls. It’s about making golf courses more difficult.

“I think it’s the most unimaginative, uninspiring, groundbreaking thing you can do. Everyone wants to see people keep beating it. That’s one of the reasons why a lot of people like what I do. It’s part of the reason a lot of people don’t like what I do.”

Source : sports.yahoo.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *