Golf

European Tour players to be hit with one-shot penalties

European Tour players to be hit with immediate one-shot penalties for two ‘bad times’ at this week’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship as golf cracks down on slow play

  • The European Tour’s crackdown on slow play comes into effect this week 
  • It includes a significant change to the four-point plan previously announced 
  • Players will now be given an immediate one-shot penalty for two ‘bad times’
  • There will also be increased fines for players who are regularly timed by officials 
  • Bryson DeChambeau came under heavy criticism for his slow play last year

The European Tour’s crackdown on slow play comes into effect at this week’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship and includes a significant change to the four-point plan previously announced.

Players will now be given an immediate one-shot penalty for two ‘bad times’ in a tournament, rather than for two such transgressions within a round.

There will also be increased fines for players who are regularly timed by officials during the season.

The European Tour’s crackdown on slow play comes into effect at this week’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship – Bryson DeChambeau (centre) came under criticism for his slow play last year

European Tour chief referee John Paramor said: ‘The tougher measures which come into effect in Abu Dhabi empower our referees to more effectively target slower players.

‘Changing the regulation for an immediate one-shot penalty to now be triggered by two bad times in a tournament instead of a round will force slower players to consistently ensure they play within timing regulations.

‘This is part of our wider, robust policy to tackle slow play but our fundamental advice to all players remains consistent – they should be ready to play when it is their turn.’

European Tour chief referee John Paramor (left) said: ‘The tougher measures which come into effect in Abu Dhabi empower our referees to more effectively target slower players’

A new timing system was tested at the BMW PGA Championship in September, with a further trial taking place in Abu Dhabi.

The aim is to use the system in a number of events in 2020, providing referees with the precise times for every group through every hole to make sure that no gaps are missed.

On-tee displays will also provide the players information on their position in relation to the group in front.

Field sizes at fully-sanctioned events will be reduced from 156 to a minimum of 144 provided that all entered players in Category 18 (the final 116-132 on the 2019 Race to Dubai) and above make it into the event.

American Bryson DeChambeau came under heavy criticism for his slow play last year.




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