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World Golf: Long putter expected to be outlawed for 2016

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World Golf: Long putter expected to be outlawed for 2016 | The Thaiger
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PHUKET: With a widely expected ban on anchoring long putters likely to be announced by the game’s ruling bodies today, players have expressed sharply contrasting views ahead of this week’s World Challenge.

While 14-times major winner Tiger Woods and putting supremo Steve Stricker are both in favour of such putters being outlawed, 2011 PGA Championship winner Keegan Bradley says he is “not happy” about the likely rule change.

American Bradley became the first player to win a major title using a long putter and has since been followed by compatriot Webb Simpson, at this year’s U.S. Open, and South African Ernie Els, at the British Open in July.

“I’m obviously not happy with the ruling, but I respect the USGA (United States Golf Association),” Bradley told reporters at Sherwood Country Club while preparing for tomorrow’s opening round.

“They make the rules, and I’ll adjust appropriately. I’m going to accept the challenge and hopefully do well when they do ban it.

“Players are very passionate about this decision. You’ve got some guys who have been using this style of putter for almost 20 years so it’s a little bit of a scary position that they’re in.”

While the long putter itself is not expected to be outlawed when the USGA and the Royal and Ancient (R&A) hold a joint teleconference call, a ban on anchoring the club to any part of the body is expected to be announced today.

The use of an extended putter seems to be totally at odds with the spirit of the game, but it has played a key role in reviving the careers of several players who have suffered from the yips, or the putting twitches.

Broomhandle or belly putters, pioneered by 2002 European Ryder Cup captain Sam Torrance among others during the late 1980s and early 1990s, are tucked under the chin, against the chest or into the belly.

They are swung in a pendulum fashion, and crucially make demands on a different set of small muscles and nerves.

“I just believe that the art of putting is swinging the club and controlling nerves and having it as a fixed point is something that’s not in the traditions of the game,” said Woods, the World Challenge defending champion and tournament host.

“We swing all other 13 clubs. I think the putter should be the same. It should be a swinging motion throughout the entire bag.

“One of the things that I was concerned about going forward is the kids who get started in the game and are starting to putt with an anchoring system. Everyone always copies what we do out here.”

Best putters
Fellow American Stricker, long regarded as one of the best putters in the game, agreed.

“Any time you can take your arms and hands out of it, especially your hands, when you can anchor it in your chest is a huge advantage,” Stricker said.

“I’m not a big proponent of long putters, but there’s going to be a lot of upset people, a lot of guys that have putted with a long putter for a long time.”

Simpson, who switched to the belly putter in 2004, says he has seen no evidence in the PGA Tour’s ‘strokes gained over the field’ putting statistic that the longer putter gives players any advantage.

“To change something that drastic, it needs to be based off facts and not what certain people think the tradition of the game looks like,” said Simpson.

“So that’s why I’ve thrown out that nobody in the top 20 last year in strokes gained was using a belly putter or long putter. This year I believe there is only one person.”

Should a ban on anchoring the putter be announced today, the rule will not come into effect until 2016 and Simpson says he will be ready for it.

“I’ve been working with a short putter now for a couple years every time I go home,” he said. “I expected the day to come, and so I just wanted to be ready.

“I didn’t want to be shocked. I’m ready to implement the short putter at any time now.”

— Reuters

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Thailand

Phuket police arrest 6 after finding large amounts of methamphetamine in raid

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Phuket police arrest 6 after finding large amounts of methamphetamine in raid | The Thaiger

Phuket Provincial Police have arrested 6 people after finding large amounts of methamphetamine and other drugs during a raid. One suspect alone allegedly had 7.6 kilograms of crystal meth (ya ice) and over 12,500 methamphetamine pills (ya bah). 29 year old Surasak ‘Bank’ Wijit and 27 year old Panida ‘Mei’ Saeyang were arrested at an apartment car park in Soi Lookkaew, Moo 6, Rassada, in eastern Phuket, after they were found in possession of the drugs.

Police also found 2 mobile phones and a red Honda PCX, registered in Phuket, as evidence. Both suspects have been charged with posessing a Category 1 drug with the intent to sell.

Other suspects arrested at the same time include 36 year old from Chiang Rai, 42 year old Sarawut ‘An’ Srichanon, from Ranong and 31 year old Pornthep ‘Iew’ Thepchampa, who were charged with the same crimes in Chalong after police found more drugs in their possession. 33 year old Kamon ‘Kung’ Sae-ngow, was arrested as well after police found kratom juice and leaves at a house in Rassada. He was taken to Phuket City Police station and was charged with a Category 5 drug possession.

SOURCE:The Phuket News

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Thailand

Phuket Muay Thai fighter is the first Thai national to compete in UFC

The Thaiger

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Phuket Muay Thai fighter is the first Thai national to compete in UFC | The Thaiger

The upcoming Ultimate Fighting Championship Fight Night event in Abu Dhabi will feature Thailand’s only national marking her third fight with the UFC, the world’s largest mixed martial arts competition. 24 year old Loma Lookboonme, from Burirram in northeastern Thailand, will fight in the event on October 3, 2020.

Loma is a Muay Thai fighter who has adapted her MMA skills to fight in the UFC where she currently trains at the Tiger Muay Thai gym in Phuket. Loma qualified for the national team at the age of 19 and has fought in over 12 nations worldwide. She currently trains 6 days a week starting daily at 6:30am with a 3 kilometre run. In the UFC, she will be competing against China’s Angela Lee who is the undisputed champion of the 52 kilogram fist weight category.

Phuket Muay Thai fighter is the first Thai national to compete in UFC | News by The Thaiger

Loma’s parents are former Muay Thai fighters and her 2 sisters currently compete as well. She reportedly started training at 8 years old after being inspired by her father, whom she describes as her “hero.”

Like most Thais in such fighting sports, Muay Thai offers a way to rise out of poverty-and fighting for the UFC can be financially lucrative. But Loma says her only Thai sponsor is the gym where she trains, with the rest of her sponsors being from foreign brands. She says she is trying to get more Thai sponsors but feels that maybe she needs to win the UFC first before Thai brands notice her.

Loma lost her last fight and says her new opponent gives her nothing to lose. She says her goal is to get into the Top 10, but is not sure when it will happen. Loma says for now, it would be good to fight against someone in the Top 10 to help her prepare for her future.

FULL INTERVIEW: Thisrupt.co

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Tourism

Phuket airport ready for tourists after finishing Covid screening labs

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Phuket airport ready for tourists after finishing Covid screening labs | The Thaiger

Phuket Airport is officially ready for tourists as authorities say they have finished installing Covid screening labs in an effort to welcome international travellers. The 5T Model for Covid-19 is being used at the airport with the goal of screening large groups of people in a quick and efficient manner. The Phuket health chief says the 5T’s stand for Target, Testing, Treating, Trusting and Tracing.

Phuket has one large airport at the north end of the island but is separated into two separate terminals – a domestic terminal (the original airport terminal), and a new international terminal opened in 2016.

The target category refers to the target groups of tourists while the tracing stands for software that will be used to monitor their movements. The testing category refers to Covid tests that will be implemented to travellers upon arrival along with the treatment and trust categories signifying the readiness of resources for medical treatment and confident communications between all parties respectively.

The Covid-19 lab container module has been set up at Phuket airport’s Terminal X (the terminal opened for charter flights opened in 2014) and will be tested tomorrow with its operation to start on September 30. As large groups of tourists could arrive (later in the year, the lab is reportedly capable of testing 96 people at a time with test results becoming available in 6 hours. What the airport would do withe tested passengers whilst waiting for 6 hours, has not been detailed at this stage.

Such a readiness plan to welcome foreign tourists originally singled out Phuket due to its popularity with travellers, and as a so-called guinea pig model to test in a controlled environment (Phuket is an island joined to the Thai mainland by a single 300 metre road bridge). Once dubbed the Phuket Model, authorities have proposed to rename the plan to “Special Tourist Visa” due to the confusion and opposition it reportedly caused. The scheme is reportedly now being proposed for all areas of Thailand but only allowing foreigners from specific countries.

SOURCE: Pattaya Mail

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