I’m watching this afternoon’s coverage of the US Open on Tivo, and just saw an interesting bit. This year, when a player’s ball comes up against one of the grandstands, they have two options: play it where it is, or drop it in the nearest circular designated drop zone. In a television interview, USGA Executive Director David Fay said that the angles from the drop zones to the greens are designed so that being there will confer no advantage. Indeed, watching Tiger hit out of one, I decided that I definitely wouldn’t want to be there.
It’s a good change that will surely speed up play and eliminate any ambiguities about where the ball should be.