Posted: 9:00 a.m. Monday, April 15, 2013
By Emily Kay
Adam Scott may be the last golfer with an anchored putter ever to win a major championship.
The new face of long putters, Scott won the 2013 Masters -- the first major victory for him and for an Australian at Augusta -- with the longest of flat sticks jammed into his chest and became the fourth of the last six major champions to wield a big bat.
Golf’s overlords were, no doubt, unamused.
After Ernie Els won the British Open last year, the USGA and R&A; kicked into overdrive and, by November, had announced a proposal to outlaw the practice of anchoring putters to any part of a golfer’s body. A 90-day comment period expired in February, after which the regulators said they would make their determination sometime this spring.
We’re guessing that, with Scott’s triumph, the pronouncement will come before the blush of victory has worn off the Aussie’s ruddy face, and he, Ernie Els (2012 British Open), Webb Simpson (2012 U.S. Open), and Keegan Bradley (2011 PGA Championship) will not be pleased with the decision.
Scott, who exorcised the demons of a final-round collapse at last year’s Open Championship with Sunday’s win, thanks in large part to stellar work on the greens, switched over to a Scotty Cameron for Titleist Futura X prototype putter in early 2011. It did not take him long to cash in with a sweeper Gary Player refers to as a “nose” putter.
In addition to boosting Scott’s confidence, the broomstick lifted its navigator to a tie for second in the 2011 Masters, that win at Firestone, and oh so close to the claret jug at Royal Lytham.
"My putting with the short putter was so hot and cold, and before I switched it was more often cold than hot," Scott told reporters after the second round of last year’s British Open. "Certainly making the adjustment to putt with a long putter took a little bit of time, but it was effective once I brought it out on tour.
"I putt much more consistent with it, which has a really positive effect on the rest of my game,” said Scott, arming long-putter enemies with more ammo for their ridiculous war on anchoring.
It will be somewhat ironic if Scott, who has been a vocal opponent of the pending anchoring ban, expedites not only the death of anchoring but implementation of the rule before the proposed 2015 starting date. But that is, quite likely, where all this is headed, and sooner, we believe, than later.