Golf Australia - - IN MY OPINION -

IDEA OUT­SIDE THE SQUARE Think­ing about ways to make pro­fes­sional golf more ex­cit­ing I came up with an idea which would change the monotony of hit­ting up the mid­dle and lag putts.

Let’s re­ward risk tak­ing in­stead of safety, let’s in­tro­duce weird and won­der­ful shots com­pared to up the mid­dle every time. The idea is mark var­i­ous zones worth cer­tain points so by the end of the hole it’s the player with the most points who wins. Let’s say off the tee a spot is marked on the fair­way, which en­cour­ages some risk to get there and is worth four points. The safe op­tion is worth just one point. This would then dic­tate where the sec­ond shot is played from, thus en­cour­ag­ing harder shots that re­quire in­no­va­tion or flair. An approach zone could be marked as well with the safe shot worth less points than the riskier area which, for ex­am­ple, re­quires you to hit a high draw, a bump and run or some­thing else weird and won­der­ful. On the greens you could also mark zones at six feet, 12 feet, 20 feet and be­yond. Hit your approach shot into the clos­est zone to the hole, the more points you earn. The approach shot com­ing from the more dif­fi­cult zone earns you bonus points. The zones on the green would then re­verse for putting with in­side six feet say worth one point and out­side 20 feet worth four points, mean­ing even if the play­ers approach wasn’t fan­tas­tic, if he sinks that long putt he’s still a chance to win in­stead of hit­ting a safe lag putt.

This is just an idea which would re­quire some refin­ing def­i­nitely, but what it would in­tro­duce is more tac­ti­cal play, en­cour­age risk tak­ing and a course played dif­fer­ently than if it was just a reg­u­lar stroke play tour­na­ment. We would also see those shots only a pro can hit and leave us in awe of. Michael Rodgers via e-mail

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