Anchoring ban: Opposition from a veteran amateur winner
By James Achenbach
Chris Maletis is a four-time Trans-Miss Senior Amateur champion who has plenty to say about the U.S. Golf Association, the R&A and their decision to outlaw the anchored stroke.
Maletis, along with his brother, Tom, owns Langdon Farms Golf Club in Aurora, Ore. Langdon Farms, designed by John Fought, is a public course. Despite the ban on anchoring as a putting method – which is expected to discourage many golfers from buying and using belly putters and long putters – Maletis says he will go out of his way to encourage ordinary golfers to continue playing with their belly and long putters.
In protest of the anti-anchoring rule, which was announced Nov. 28 by the USGA and R&A, Maletis says he is prepared to erect a sign at the entrance to Langdon Farms: “Golfers with belly putters and long putters welcome here.”
“Golf needs to attract more players, not drive them away,” he said.
In support of belly and long putters, Maletis talks about golfers having more fun, about players overcoming the yips, about golfers being able to practice longer because they aren’t bending over as much.
“These putters are a very good thing for golf,” said Maletis, who uses a belly putter. “I don’t want any golfers to stop playing because somebody suddenly told them their putters were nonconforming.
"I don’t have any problem with the USGA and R&A setting the rules for competition, but this is going too far. For ordinary golfers, I would like to see anchoring treated like the golf carts that people ride in -- if you need to use it, fine, you can take advantage of it.
“Golfers should feel good about their golf clubs. These putters are a big deal to a lot of golfers. Why take something away that has been legal for all these years?
“I’ll put up a sign just to show golfers that the whole world hasn’t gone nuts.”