Sunday, May 11, 2008

Dumb New LPGA Rule

This one is courtesy of Doug Ferguson, who is buddies with Juli Inkster. And Juli - if you know her - will always break it down for you in simple, blunt terms.

A half-dozen players not eligible for the pro-am last week on the LPGA Tour were on the putting green, with their caddies standing on the fringe. That's courtesy of a daft new policy that bans caddies from being on the practice green between the hours of 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Turns out a couple of players were having a putting contest when a caddie was standing in their line. They asked him to move, he did, but that wasn't enough. They went to the commissioner to complain about crowded conditions on the green, and a new policy was enacted.

The fine for a caddie being on the green - to work with his player's mechanics or retrieve balls from the cup - is $500.

The policy even applies to the chipping area, and it's peculiar to see players hit three or four chips, then shag their own golf balls.

Count Juli Inkster among those who think the policy is bordering on ridiculous.

"You know what? It's women,'' she said when asked for a comment. "If you just put that down, everyone will know what you mean. Just capitalize 'women' and you don't need to explain anything else.''

You cannot even make something like that up, and why would you? You would be wasting everyone's time. I would expect that this new policy goes away awfully quickly, but it is funny what will make professional golfers (of both sexes) complain and find annoying when they are so locked into their element.


Hound Dog said...

Caddy Larry Smich at Life on Tour has a different opinion on that rule. He had been complaining on his blog for months about too many people standing on the putting green, and was quite happy when that rule was implemented. Maybe Juli was one of those inconvenienced by the rule?

Ryan Ballengee said...

Totally possible, HD. It just seems like it would be expected that there are two person teams working together on each green/chipping area. It's a given on the PGA Tour. I would think it's an allocation of resources issue, though - having enough facilities to handle a tournament of at least 100 players.