The two-time Major champion says that making golf courses longer is "feeding the beast"


Mark O’Meara On Technology: Make Golf Courses More Accountable

Mark O’Meara has had his say on golf’s technology debate, saying that courses need to be made tougher and more demanding, but not longer.

There has been plenty of talk recently about how far the golf ball goes and how to combat it after 25 under par won the BMW Championship at the famously difficult Medinah.

Gary Player said the golf ball should be cut 50 yards and Tony Jacklin slated the modern game largely due to the technology.

Adam Scott has a different idea, though, wanting golf courses to be made “smarter, not longer.”

Two-time Major winner Mark O’Meara is one who agrees with Adam Scott.

“I think my take on it has always been, as long as the equipment and the ball are legal I really haven’t had a problem with it because I understand the athletes are bigger, stronger, faster,” he told Golf Monthly.

“The ball goes a long way and a lot of people have said how that’s maybe ruining the game but my estimation you know, I mean power always had a little bit of an advantage.

“You cant fault the manufacturers for trying to push the limits and everything in life gets better.

“Aeroplanes are better, media is better, accessibility is better and so it doesn’t phase me that equipment has gotten better and the golf ball’s gotten better.

“I think the only way you can really combat that is not by always making the courses longer, but making the courses more accountable.

“Make the courses more like links golf like we’ve just witnessed in the Open Championship where weather, creativity factor and make players, force them to have to have an option to have to think more.

“Strategically-wise getting around the golf course as opposed to saying ‘oh we are just going to build a 530 yard par-4’, to me there is no strategy there and you know, they almost fed the beast by making these courses longer.

“It is kind of interesting to see a golf course that has two short par-4s where there are a possible driving holes or you have a hole like number 7 at Pebble, or the Postage Stamp at Troon where the hole is 95 yards, 118-20 yards but have severity around the greens so if you’re not right on distance control or the shot selection that you’ve picked you’re going to pay a heavy price.

“And that doesn’t seem to be where they are going, they feel like ‘hey we just have to make everything longer, longer and longer’.

“And yeah all these kids hit the ball really long but if they can hit it long and straight then fine, but if they can’t hit it long and straight then there has to be more of a sever penalty out there.”

Listen to our interview with Mark O’Meara on this week’s Golf Monthly Clubhouse Podcast. Interview begins at 24 mins and a wide range of topics are discussed –

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