From The Inbox

What was Alex Miceli thinking?

Not much, contends reader, who criticizes Miceli for his failing to grill Keith Pelley about European Tour deals with some bad actors

The question posed by Alex Miceli to European Tour CEO Keith Pelley regarding Turnberry is quizzical (“A visionary for European Tour’s future,” Feb. 16).

Why ask about shunning that historic venue and keeping it out of the British Open rotation and not ask about the European Tour playing in Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Africa and China? The Middle Eastern countries don’t view women as equals and do not tolerate what many accept as admirable and acceptable human behavior. Does the name Daniel Pearl ring a bell? China is the model of human-rights violations – every day. 

Yet Miceli does not ask Pelley why the European Tour is playing in these countries?

C’mon, man!

John R. Cameron
Port Orange, Fla.
(Cameron is a member of the PGA of America.)

A misguided analogy of biblical proportions
Regarding Dan O’Neill’s article on the PGA of America's move to allow distance-measuring devices in championships not being entirely about pace of play (“There’s another reason why PGA OKs rangefinders,” Feb. 15): Let me see if I have this straight. The soul of golf remains pure and unsullied when professionals get distance information from yardage books, which are based on based on laser measuring and/or GPS data. However, the soul of golf is forever tarnished when these same professionals get the same information from a different tool: a rangefinder?

I am not buying it. A preacher quoting biblical passages to the congregation from an iPad is just as “holy” as the preacher who reads the same passages from a book. Individual skill will determine which sermon is more effective.

Peter Ludwig
Englewood, Colo.

For most of us, DMDs can only help
It appears that contributors to Morning Read have to express their opinions during and after the facts when writing their articles. In some instances, passion seems to override logic as writers put pen to paper. That ages me. I should say fingers to keyboard.

The current topic of DMDs is an example (“From the Morning Read inbox,” Feb. 11, Feb. 12, Feb. 15, Feb. 16). If you have your DMD in your hand as you approach your ball and observe “ready golf” protocol, your rounds will be shorter in time.

At the professional level, the pros not only look at what quadrant of the green to hit to, but also where in the quadrant will give them the best putting opportunity. So, DMDs will not displace their yardage books. And playing for millions of dollars will require that they process as much information as they can.

The bottom line is that amateurs are trying not to lay the sod over with a wedge to anywhere on the green, but they still should be able to play faster with a DMD. At the professional level, probably not.

There I go, adding another subjective opinion.

Dave Richner
St. Johns, Fla.

Golf yardage should be a simple calculation
Reader Frank Blauch makes some great points about whether we need precision with shots to the green (“From the Morning Read inbox,” Feb. 16).

My GPS device packed up, so I played without it, and it made no difference to my scores. I analyzed the best and safest place to miss each green, and it is almost always at the back on my course, even when the flag is at the front.

So, find out the club with a median carry distance of 150 yards, add or subtract using the marker post, decide on the club for that distance and take the next longer one. The worst that will happen is you'll be chipping from the back fringe, not splashing out of a plugged lie in the front bunker.

Take an honest look at the strokes the pros play from inside 200 yards. Is their distance judgment that much better than yours when you hit a solid shot?

They just don't take three more to hole out. As always, it's that third stroke that makes the difference.

Terry Wall
Winchester, England

Augusta National shuns Women’s Mid-Amateur winner
The field for the Augusta National Women’s Amateur does not include the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur champion among the 86 invited players. There are three exempt categories for junior girls’ championship winners, but not an exemption for the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur winner.

Augusta National's argument is probably that mid-amateurs, who are 25 or older, have the ability to qualify through the Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking provision. I’m not familiar with all that goes into world rankings, but it would seem to me that finishing among the top 10 in a tournament outside of the U.S. is a lot easier than finishing top 10 in the U.S. Maybe that’s why 46 of the 86 are International players.

Also, we know from rankings that a lot of middle-of-the-road finishes will run up the points. Mid-ams work and therefore are limited in the number of events they can play. They need high finishes in those few events if they are to accumulate enough ranking points.

Maybe the ANWA committee thinks these mid-ams are over-the-hill and can’t compete with the college and junior players. Three years ago, Lauren Greenlief, the 2015 U.S. Mid-Amateur winner, lost in the quarterfinals of the U.S. Women’s Amateur. So, don’t tell me they can’t compete.

As it has over the years, Augusta National again has done just enough to get itself a “see what we’re doing.” But when the club’s leaders have an opportunity to take it a little further, they chunk it.

Charlie Jurgonis
Fairfax, Va.

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