I'm not sure if this has been covered before but here goes anyway.
A colleague of mine who plays off 12 has decided that he will not concede a putt unless it's literally hanging over the hole. The result is a fairly painstaking round where every member of the fourball is required to mark their balls and line up >2 foot putts.
His rationale is fair enough but my opinion is that he's completely missing the point of matchplay golf between fellow gentlemen.
An exert from a recent e-arguement is below for your reference. I'd be very interested to hear your views on the topic.
At the risk of re-opening the whole gimme debate (which is exactly what I am now doing) it really struck me this weekend - where some of the greens were treacherous (by our usual standards) - that a gimme is supposed to be where there is minute-to-zero chance that the other player would miss - hence my yardstick of "if you would be happy to knock that in one handed then its a gimme". Unless being used purely as a gamesmanship tactic, a gimme is not supposed to be a gift to someone who actually still has a bit to do (even if it is probable that he will sink it). The problem is (your problem is) we get used to seeing the pros give gimmes of several feet, but they are pros - amateurs playing on tricky greens with double-figure h'caps can't guarantee sinking a 2 footer across a slope where a miss might take the ball 6 feet past. That's a large part of the skill - and enjoyment - of golf, so play the shot. If we are simply saving time by precluding the need to tap in (literally), no problem - even I give gimmes for that - but for goodness sake, if some skill is still required, get on with the game and finish the hole.
You are still completely missing the point of gimmies.
It's simply a gentlemanly way of saying to your opponent 'I don't reckon you'll miss that (if you took your time and lined it up as you would a normal putt) but seeing as it's so small and I want to get on with my putt (or the next hole) then I'm going to respect your skills as a golfer and offer an friendly olive branch by giving you that putt in the spirit of the game'
You are right there are no guarantees the opponent would get it but I'd rather concede a putt than have an opponent casually feel the need to hole it without lining it up and miss it. That, to me would feel like a hollow win. In the same vein I'd rather concede a put than wait around for him to line it up and then hole it because that to me is just cold hearted, mean pedantic golf that I don't particularly enjoy. Also in the same vein I would expect my opponent to treat me with the same level of respect.
It's the spirit of the game that is social competitive golf (not competition medal play) - THIS IS THE POINT THAT YOU ARE REFUSING TO ACCEPT
There are of course certain situations when gamesmanship comes into play as previously discussed and also if a 1- 2 footer was to win the hole rather than half or lose it then I'd be less inclined to concede it.I]
I can certainly see the rationale. However, sport is sport and in no other sport I play would it be contemplated that someone would be afforded a result that they had not in fact achieved, as a form of "never mind, have it anyway". As I have said before, I would be ANNOYED if my opponent kept giving me gimmes and preventing me from finishing the hole (literal tap-ins aside). That is all part of the enjoyment, and possibly one of the more satisfying aspects of playing - I don't want an assessment and approval from someone that I am this good or that bad and them deciding what I might or might not achieve: let me achieve it (or not) (and vice versa).
It is the indignation and the "well, I never..." of a gimme not being given that so amuses and annoys me. If it's given, great: if it isn't, nothing is being implied or any offence being given. Get on with it.
Trying to emulate Jacklin and Nicklaus' example is frankly ridiculous. The gesture was precisely because the consequences of missing were so huge (millions watching, historic event etc) and possibly life-altering - and therefore a very magnanimous gesture indeed and to be commended in that context. When we play, a missed putt hopefully won't have that effect, so if its not given go ahead and putt and suck it up if you miss.