Shorts could be coming to golf's oldest major championship -- just not in 2016.
The R&A offered its view on shorts at its Open Championship on Saturday, telling the Press Association that they are looking at the possibility of allowing them beyond this year at Royal Troon.
“We welcome initiatives that ensure golf remains modern and relevant to today’s generation of players but we do have to maintain a balance with the traditions of the game,” said an R&A spokesperson.
“While we already have our conditions of entry for the Open at Royal Troon, this is something the Championship Committee will consider in future. It would certainly be a pleasant dilemma to have if the weather here in mid-July is sufficiently warm for shorts to be desirable.”
If you'll recall the weather at last year's Open at St. Andrews, you'd understand why the R&A isn't all that reluctant to consider allowing shorts.
On Tuesday, the European Tour's 15-man Tournament Committee made official a policy that allows players to wear shorts during pro-am and practice rounds at their events. The precedent for the change came last week at the EurAsia Cup in Malaysia, when European captain Darren Clarke implored tournament officials to allow his players to wear shorts in the stifling heat of the practice rounds. Initially denied by tournament officials, Clarke turned to tour chief executive Keith Pelley, who gave the green light, provided Clarke's players would don pants during tournament rounds.
Shorts are not kosher at any of the other major championships, including the Masters, U.S. Open and PGA Championship. Shorts are allowed, however, during qualifying for the U.S. Open.
While the R&A gave a positive reaction -- perhaps somewhat tongue-in-cheek -- to shorts at The Open, don't expect the PGA Tour to make a change anytime soon.
“The PGA Tour's policy remains unchanged," PGA Tour vice-president Ty Votaw told Golfweek earlier this week. "Players are required to wear long pants when playing practice, pro-am and official competition rounds.”