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The R&A and USGA Introduce Model Local Rule To Further Limit Use Of Green-Reading Materials

11.25am 3rd December 2021 - Management Topics - This story was updated on Friday, December 10th, 2021

Golf’s governing bodies have made available a Model Local Rule (MLR) to further limit the use of Green-Reading Materials. MLR G-11 enables a committee to limit players to using only the yardage book that it has approved for use in the competition.

This local rule is intended only for the highest levels of competitive golf and, even then, only for competitions where it is realistic for the committee to undertake an approval process for yardage books. It will be available starting 1 January 2022.

The local rule gives a committee the ability to establish an officially approved yardage book for a competition so that the diagrams of putting greens show only minimal detail (such as significant slopes, tiers or false edges that indicate sections of greens). In addition, the local rule limits the handwritten notes that players and caddies are allowed to add to the approved yardage book.

The purpose behind the local rule is to ensure that players and caddies use only their eye and feel to help them read the line of play on the putting green.

The R&A and the USGA developed MLR G-11 in response to feedback from several professional tours.

The MLR, along with question-and-answer guidance, can be found here.

As the local rule should only be adopted at the highest levels of competitive golf, all other golfers will continue to be able to use green-reading tools so long as they meet the requirements established in 2019.  For more information on the current Rule see here.

The R&A, based in St Andrews, Scotland, and the USGA govern the sport of golf worldwide, operating in separate jurisdictions but with a commitment to a single code for the Rules of Golf, Rules of Amateur Status and Equipment Standards. The R&A governs the sport worldwide, outside of the United States and Mexico, on behalf of over 36 million golfers in 144 countries and with the consent of 159 organisations from amateur and professional golf.

The R&A aims to invest £200 million in developing golf over a decade and supports the growth of the sport internationally, including the development and management of sustainable golf facilities.

For more information visit https://www.randa.org/

The USGA is a non-profit organisation that celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Centre, where science and innovation are fuelling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honour the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artefacts. To learn more, visit usga.org

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