The game’s governing bodies have proposed a form of forking where elite golfers use different golf balls than recreational golfers.
Crucially, the plan would limit the distance a ball can travel in elite competition to 320 yards. Yet while The R&A chief executive Martin Slumbers and his USGA counterpart Mike Whan insist the plan will help preserve the game’s integrity in the long run, it hasn’t gone down well with one of the game’s biggest hitters. .
LIV Golf player Bryson DeChambeau scoffed at the idea, telling the circuit’s official website: “If you could say I’m the complete opposite times 1000, that’s what I would be.”
The 2020 US Open winner, who is preparing for this week’s LIV Golf Tuscon event, argued that the proposal will unfairly penalize players who have honed their game to include long shots.
He said: “It’s a huge disadvantage for us guys who have worked really hard to learn how to hit further. Look, if they do it in a way where it only affects the top end, I see why. But I think it’s “The most egregious thing you could do to golf. It’s not about rolling golf balls backwards, it’s about making golf courses harder.”
DeChambeau also explained that while his big hitting style is divisive, it’s something that creates interest in the game: “I think it’s the most unimaginative, uninspiring, cutting-play thing you could do,” said the youngster from 29 years. “Everyone wants to see people go further. That’s part of the reason 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.
“But again, create more conversation in a positive way than reduce it and try to make everyone equal. I’m interested in equality. I’m not interested in fairness on this front.”
It’s no surprise that DeChambeau is against the proposal given his dedication to his craft, which has included embarking on a brutal training regimen to dramatically increase and improve his swing speed and driving distances. Still, it’s remarkable how forcefully he’s made his feelings clear.
The American isn’t the only one expressing his dissatisfaction with the proposal, though with more criticism coming from Titleist, rather than a player, immediately after the announcement. The equipment manufacturer said the golf ball fork proposal was “a solution looking for a problem.”