The United States Golf Association (USGA) and the British Royal & Ancient (R&A), golf's global governing bodies, today announced their plans to stop the increase in distances in golf. This will be done through the introduction of a new professional golf ball from January 2028 (which will be implemented in amateur golf in 2030).
Rory McIlroy, statements
Although the measure had been discussed for some months, it has been met with a great deal of criticism. Jon Rahm, for example, expressed his doubts about the decision in March of this year: "I would ask them why they are changing something that is working in a golden age of golf, where the sport has exploded since the beginning of COVID and is in constant growth with completely different routes and many people watching.
"They're hell-bent on making professional golf a more challenging sport. I don't really understand why, though." said Rahm, one of the players with longest drives on the PGA circuit. However, he stated that he will not be affected by this particular ball change.
Unfortunately, the decision to change the ball for professionals would affect amateurs in the years 2028 and 2029 since they would lose one of the most valued attractions of golf: playing with the same equipment as the great legends of the sport.
On the other hand, Rory McIlroy expressed his support for the change in statements to 'Sky Sports' "I think we will bring back certain skills in the professional game that might have become obsolete. Plus, it will make watching professional golf a lot more exciting; we will see a variety of different styles of play," said the Northern Irish golfer.
"It will no longer be just 'boleadora golf' as it predominantly is now at the highest level of golf," he added. Regarding environmental safety, Rahm commented: "With golf courses becoming larger, they need to take up more land to build them.
Is this really sustainable? With more courses being built, they need more water to maintain them." His environmental reasons are fundamental to justify a change of ball. "If you are a golf fan, it is very likely that you have heard of courses that have had to close or remodel a hole due to the danger it represents for players.
And, as Padraig Harrington points out, when golfers fail Not only does this slow down play, it also creates unnecessary risks and increases construction costs for golf courses, which must come up with wider, more open layouts to avoid injuries. but always with responsibility!"