The R&A and the USGA, golf’s governing bodies, issued a joint statement yesterday stating that they will be reviewing the materials that players have at their disposal when it comes to reading greens.

Rule 14-3 in the vast bible of golfing laws limits the use of equipment and devices that may assist a player in general play but the green-reading materials have grown in prominence and sophistication in recent seasons, with complex, detailed breakdowns and diagrams of slopes which resembles some kind of E=Mc2 formula for getting that dimpled ba’ to disappear down the hole.

Ian Poulter is one touring professional who has a few gripes with the use of greens books. “The tour greens books should be banned," said Poulter, who believes the additional flicking and faffing through the book does little to help the pace of play. "No one on tour got a card because of those books. The art of putting has been lost. If you can't read a green, that's your fault."

The R&A and the USGA are expected to address the increasingly prickly issue “in the coming months” and expressed their concerns in the joint address.

It said: “The R&A and the USGA believe that a player's ability to read greens is an essential part of the skill of putting. Rule 14-3 limits the use of equipment and devices that might assist a player in their play, based on the principle that golf is a challenging game in which success should depend on the judgement, skills and abilities of the player.

"We are concerned about the rapid development of increasingly detailed materials that players are using to help with reading greens during a round.

"We are reviewing the use of these materials to assess whether any actions need to be taken to protect this important part of the game. We expect to address this matter further in the coming months."

On the PGA Tour, meanwhile, Jonas Blixt and Cameron Smith won the Zurich Classic of New Orleans title at the fourth play-off hole against Kevin Kisner and Scott Brown.

Blixt and Smith looked to have the first official team event on the PGA Tour in 36 years sewn up on Sunday, before a remarkable finish saw the long-time leaders caught at the last.

Kisner had stunned his opponents by chipping in for an eagle from 95 feet to force extra holes, although darkness at TPC Louisiana meant they had to return on Monday to play them.