Phil Mickelson calls out PGA Tour on local-rule adoption; Rory McIlroy shows he’s off base

Phil Mickelson is remaining steadfast in his opposition to a new local rule brought forth by golf’s governing bodies. His thumbs, however, are not.

Mickelson fired off yet another tweet on Wednesday morning, this time accusing the PGA Tour of adopting a model local rule, which limits the length of driver shafts to 46 inches, through the media and without representation from the Tour’s members.

“It is extremely disappointing to find out that the PGA Tour adopted the new USGA rule through the media,” Mickelson wrote. “I don’t know of any player who had any say or any kind of representation in this matter. I do know many are wondering if there’s a better way.”

Mickelson’s argument, though, appears to be missing context.

The Tour, which has said it will adopt the rule when it goes into effect on Jan. 1, had already come out with a statement on Tuesday that explained that it had surveyed the usage of clubs on its three main tours and that its Player Advisory Council recently reviewed the subject and concluded that Tour would go ahead with implementing the rule.


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On Wednesday afternoon in Las Vegas, Rory McIlroy confirmed as much, saying he was a part of the discussion.

“It might make a difference going forward,” McIlroy said when asked about the rule. “I think the trend was there of guys going to longer clubs and using them, but I think it’s more of a preventative measure. I think if this is as far as they want the ball to go, I think we’re too far past like trying to roll it back, but if this is sort of setting the limit, I think it’s just a preventative measure for the future.

“I don’t think it will make a world of difference, but I was in all those meetings when we discussed it for quite a while and I think the majority of players are on board with it.”



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