MELBOURNE: Greg Norman believes technology is ruining golf and rules should be introduced banning some of the changes.
The former world number one said he wanted the sport’s administrators to follow Formula One’s lead by putting a limit on the types of innovations that can be used so that the game does not get overtaken by technology.
Norman said changes to the balls and clubs meant that players were now hitting the ball so far that many of the skills that were once a part of the game were no longer required.
“The long players are still going to be the long players,” he said.
“But you’ve got to bring the variety back into the game, have players hitting their long and mid irons which they don’t need to do now.”
Norman said many courses which were once regarded as testing or even treacherous had been rendered toothless by new technology that allows professionals to drive the ball around 350 metres.
The Australian, once regarded as one of the longest hitters in the game, used to drive the ball around 275 metres when he was at his physical prime.
Now aged 47, he said he smacks it over 300 but is no longer regarded as one of the long-hitters.
“I’m older and I should be getting shorter, but I can carry it 305 or 310,” he said.
Norman, in Australia for this weekend’s Heineken Classic at Royal Melbourne, also took aim at Australia’s young players saying it was time someone replaced him as the country’s unofficial golf ambassador.
“I want to see a young Australian step up to the plate and take on all the responsibilities, not just the playing responsibilities, all the responsibilities that come with representing your country,” said Norman, champions of the prestigious British Open in 1986 and 1993.
“It is the responsibility of these players to do something for the game, to help build this place back up.” – Reuters