Brooks Koepka and Rory McIlroy want more players penalised over slow play


Brooks Koepka and Rory McIlroy have been speaking out against slow play, calling for penalties and proper implementation of the 40 second rule

Rory McIlroy and Brooks Koepka spoke out against slow play again on Wednesday as they both called for stroke penalties to be handed out more frequently when players break the 40 second limit.

The topic of slow was broached in both McIlroy and Koepka's press conferences at The Northern Trust on Wednesday, and it was clear the World No.1 and World No.3 felt very passionately that more direct action needs to be taken. 

It's not the first time either player has spoken out about it, with McIlroy calling it an 'epidemic' in March and Koepka becoming something of an outspoken champion against slow play this season.

It's hardly surprising, given that they are not only arguably the hottest players in the world right now, but are recognised as two of the quickest. And neither held back this time either when it came to criticism over the current state of slow play in the sport.

For McIlroy, the problem of slow play and responsibility surrounding it starts at the top of the game. The four-time major winner thinks players are given too many chances, and says the solution is penalising those who can't keep to the clock.

"It's genuinely a problem in our game," said McIlroy. "It starts at our level because people try to emulate us. I've heard stories of college events and how long they take. There's no reason why it should take that long. I don't know what -- I've sat up here numerous times and said that, you know, it has to be addressed some way.

"For me, I think the guys that are slow are the guys that they get too many chances before they are penalized. So it should be a warning and then a shot. It should be you're put on the clock and that is your warning, and then if you get a bad time while on the clock, it's a shot. That will stamp it out right away.

"I don't understand why we can't just implement that. It doesn't -- like we are not children that need to being told five or six times what to do. Okay, you're on the clock, okay, I know if I play slowly here, I'm going to get penalised and I think that's the way forward."

It's something Koepka agrees with, calling for more frequent penalties in regard to the 40 second rule. 

"I think it's just gotten out of hand," he said.

"I don't think anybody likes waiting. Especially if you're going to be sitting on a tee box for 15 minutes to hit your tee shot. I just don't -- I get that you can take a long time for your thought process, but once you're done thinking about it, just go. What else is there to do? That's been the problem I have.

"I get that we're out here, we're playing, and there's nothing I can do about it, but at the same time, it's up to the rules officials. What I don't understand is if I hit in the water, I have to take a penalty stroke. It's in the rule book. And then you have 40 seconds to hit a shot. That's in the rule book, too.

"So I don't want to take a penalty shot. I mean, so where -- where -- that's in the rule book. They are all in the rule book. So figure it out and penalise somebody."

And the current FedEx Cup leader was quick to offer himself up as the guinea pig if it helped speed up the game as a whole. 

"I've played with slow players a lot," Koepka said, stating that he doesn't let what other players do affect him. 

"It doesn't bug me. I just don't -- yeah, it might annoy you, but it doesn't affect how I play. I'm not trying to speed up. I'm trying to do the opposite. I've said that. Try to get put on the clock, but doesn't seem to work because nobody will penalise anybody. And you know what, even if I take over 40 seconds, penalise me. I'll be the guinea pig. It doesn't matter. It needs to happen."