An enforced shot clock will be trialled at the Austrian Open next year, and European Tour stalwart Lee Westwood has welcomed the move.
It will be the first time that such a move is tested to tackle slow play.
The Daily Mail reports that golfers will receive a penalty stroke if they take longer than 40 seconds over their shots, although they will receive an initial warning before being penalised. A player could potentially receive several penalty strokes if they continue to take too long to complete their shots.
A referee will be assigned to walk around the course with every group and time every shot.
It is hoped the new measure could help speed up a round by as much as 40 minutes.
If successful, the policy could be enforced across the professional game.
“The idea was floated at a players’ meeting on Tuesday night and it received unanimous support,” one official was quoted as saying.
Former World No 1 Westwood has welcomed the move, saying: “What a brilliant idea and long overdue.”
And Westwood’s Ryder Cup team-mate Andy Sullivan also voiced his approval.
“It underlines how long 40 seconds is to play a shot and how ridiculous it is that rounds take so long,” he said. “The sooner it’s introduced on tour, the better.”
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