You may have seen Jordan Spieth looking at the hole while putting, especially over the short ones. But this technique has been around for a long time with mixed results.
We recently stumbled across this great old footage (via the British Pathé archives) of Australian golfer Tom Howard on the putting green in 1926 (not sure where?). Howard is showing off his skills with the short stick by rolling in a few putts without looking at the golf ball. (But see the video below for the outtakes)
As the video outlines at the start, Howard was indeed recognised as Australia’s best professional golfer for a few years during the 1920’s.
Howard won the club championship at Bonnie Doon Golf Club eight times in nine years before taking up golf as a career winning The Australian Open at Royal Adelaide in 1923, the Australian PGA Championship in 1924 and 1925, and the Queensland Open in 1927.
Norman Von Nida once carried the bag for Howard before he went on to forge a career in golf course design. He was jointly responsible for the original layouts of The Lakes and Eastlake Golf Clubs with Eric Apperly, while Howard also designed Pennant Hills Golf Club and Rockingham Golf Club, among others.
But there is more to the first video than on first look (or no look). It seems Howard took a takes to knock the golf ball in the hole. While the green isn’t exactly running as true as you would come to expect in modern golf, maybe it’s not as easy as it looks after all.