CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem has plenty of allies in his opposition of the decision made by the Royal & Ancient (R&A) and the United States Golf Association (USGA) to ban the anchoring of the putting stroke.
Beginning in 2016, rule 14-1B will go into effect, reading that a golfer "in making a stroke, must not anchor the club, either directly or by use an anchor point."
This is the beginning of the four-year rules cycle for the governing bodies.
What will be permitted is the claw grip, cross-handed, long putter not anchored, mid-length putter not anchored, grip resting against forearm, forearms held against body without anchor point, traditional grip and one or both elbows braced against body.
What will be prohibited in 2016 are mid-length putting anchored against the stomach, anchored long putter, anchor point created by forearm and end of club anchored against chin.
The penalty for illegal use of a putter is a two-stroke penalty in stroke play and a loss of a hole in match play.
Finchem hasn't said the PGA Tour will follow the lead of the R&A and USGA, but you can expect the PGA Tour to cave, despite what Finchem said in February.
"We don't attempt to denigrate that position in anyway whatsoever," he said three months ago. "It's just on this issue, we think if they were to move forward they would be making a mistake."
If the PGA Tour chose to allow anchored putting for its sanctioned events, it wouldn't be permitted during the U.S. Open and British Open, making for an interesting dynamic among tour players. Many players would need two putters, unless they opt to putt conventionally with a long shaft, which isn't the most comfortable of options.
The PGA Tour and PGA of America have voiced their opposition to the ban, while the European Tour, the LPGA Tour and many other golf organizations favor it.
On a more regional level, the opposition is palpable.
"I think it's stupid personally," said Edgewood Country Club head pro Craig Berner, who won the West Virginia Open in 2005 at Snowshoe's Raven Golf Club. "They're hitting golf balls 370 yards but they're worried about anchored putters."
Berner - who has anchored his putter off and on since 2005 - admits that anchoring his putter makes his stroke more manageable. He said it "takes the hands out of it a little bit more. It's a little bit of an advantage, but I wouldn't call it cheating."
However, he and five-time Open champion Brad Westfall pointed out that not many of the PGA Tour's top money winners anchor their putters.
Although four of the last six major championship winners, including 2013 Masters champion Adam Scott, anchor the putter, that strategy is used by only three of the top 20 players on the PGA Tour's money leaders.