PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem is well-versed in the art of politics from his days in the Jimmy Carter Administration. The Commish was at his politically-correct today at the Accenture Match Play Championship in addressing the U.S. Golf Association’s proposed ban on anchoring putters.
As expected, Finchem said the Tour is against the ban. He even went as far as saying the USGA (and Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, Scotland) would be making a “mistake” if the ruling bodies approved the ban after the comment period ends Feb. 28.
The ban, Finchem said, would not be in the “best interest of golf or the PGA Tour.”
“Our Player Advisory Council looked at it twice,” Finchem said. “We had the USGA come in and make a presentation to a player meeting in San Diego. The USGA made a presentation to our Board.
“We researched and looked at it and articulated our position at the end of last week to the USGA and shared that thinking also with the R&A. Essentially where the PGA TOUR came down was that they did not think that banning anchoring was in the best interest of golf or the PGA TOUR. I would note that the PGA of America came to the same conclusion after consultation with their membership. Golf Course Owners Association came to the same conclusion, as well.”
Finchem added that regardless of how the issue is resolved, it is not the Tour’s intention to be “contrary or divisive.”
“We hold the USGA in the highest regard as a key part of the game of golf,” Finchem said. “We don’t attempt to denigrate that position in any way whatsoever. It’s just on this issue we think if they were to move forward, they would be making a mistake.”