Mel Reid is the latest name to come out and criticise the pace of play on tour. But the LET star isn’t interested in lip service, she wants action
Both the men’s and women’s games at the highest level have received widespread criticism in recent years for the often painfully slow play, but it’s rare for us to be treated to that electrifying moment a star comes out and publicly lays into his or her peers for their actions.
In this distorted year we’ve had a handful of players comment on Bryson DeChambeau’s antics, while more recently Stacy Lewis used the platform of her winner’s speech at the Ladies Scottish Open to verbalise the problem.
Now Mel Reid is the latest big name to urge the tours to start taking the issue seriously – and she’s not interested in excuses.
“It’s a huge problem on the tour,” the six-time LET winner tells NCG. “We all know who the slow players are on tour. We get paired with someone we know is slow and, honestly, it’s ridiculous.
“I really don’t know how some of them – male or female – take so long to make decisions.”
When it comes to a solution or, indeed, a punishment, Reid is all for the stricter approach.
“I don’t think they should get any warning,” she says. “We talk about it on the tour all the time – don’t warn them, just give them a shot penalty.
“The girls that are quicker are trying to stamp down on it, but the tours need to be more strict.”
Charley Hull said after the Scottish Open debacle that, when it’s turning into a bit of a slog, she passes the time by “doodling love hearts” in her notepad. Reid prefers to play the slow pokes at their own game.
“I will try and walk slower between shots. If they’re going to play that kind of game then so will I,” she says, laughing. “I don’t want them affecting me, so I’ll take a bit more time around the greens – though I would still class myself as fast even when I do that.
“Otherwise I’ll chirp my caddie and talk about how slow they are, or we’ll just chat to try and get our minds off it.”
The problem, Reid also explains, goes much further than just the Sunday afternoon in a tour event.
“You’ve got the Average Joe watching the pros on TV at the weekend then doing exactly the same thing on a Tuesday afternoon,” she adds. “It’s brutally slow to play.”
Do you agree with Mel? Is it time for the tours to start being more strict about the pace of play? Let us know in the comments below or you can tweet us.
- Reid was talking to NCG as an ambassador for Ellesse, which has recently released a new range with American Golf
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