Augusta Penalty Shots

Tianlang Guan copped a penalty for slow play on Friday afternoon. And so he should have. Slow play is a blight on the game and the sooner the game’s hierarchy stamp it out the better. It was unfortunate for the 14 year-old to be on the receiving end, but just maybe his penalty will highlight the issue to the millions of golfers watching. Slow play shouldn’t be tolerated. And if a warning or two isn’t going to be heard, then the only option is to penalise players where it hurts.

I just hope that tournament officials can show some sort of consistency and penalise the pros, even those who are leading tournaments. A year or two of diligent application should see slow play a thing of the past. At least I hope so.

Tiger Woods’s penalty is an entirely different thing and it’s an overreaction to say he should have been disqualified.

Tiger may have dropped the ball incorrectly but was allowed to play on due to a rule change – a good rule change that allows penalty strokes to be added if more information comes to hand after the signing of the card. Love it or hate it, them the rules. You can’t have it both ways and say the rules need to be adhered to one minute but ask for a disqualification another because you don’t agree with them.

Not sure why these things happen. Why isn’t there an official in all groups ensuring penalty drops etc have been done correctly? The rules at best are unclear. At worst they are confusing. Even David Feherty during the telecast wasn’t sure what drop options Tiger had.

We all need to take a deep breath here and get on with enjoying the golf. And just maybe an Aussie is on the brink of a long overdue victory.

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  • Mike Divot

    Reply Reply April 14, 2013

    I don’t mind that TW wasn’t disqualified. I do mind that the rules committee made it look like they jumped through hoops trying to find a way to let him keep playing, ONE DAY after a rigid “rules are rules” application on a soft target.

    Double standards or what?

    The kid took 4 hours to play his round, and the leading groups took 5½ hours plus, but they’re not even on the clock somehow?

    It’s a terrible look. They’re not really serious about slow play.

    • Cameron

      Reply Reply April 14, 2013

      Mike: No doubt there’s some double standards with the slow play thing. I hope this incident will now mean that ALL players are hit with penalties from now on – and not just in this year’s Masters. It needs to be stamped out from the game. It was unfortunate and maybe a soft target.

  • Steady

    Reply Reply April 14, 2013

    The number one reason why TW wasn’t given his marching orders
    Was because of money. Tv ratings and exposure too the World wide audience was at risk losing
    So many viewers because he wasn’t playing.
    As for the Chinese kid Win Won Soon he was a true golf champion. Copped his bs
    Penalty and humbly moved on.

    • Cameron

      Reply Reply April 14, 2013

      Steady: I don’t think it had anything to do with money. In all honesty, it seems they applied the new rule (I think 33) correctly. Both Tiger and Guan handled themselves perfectly.

  • Steady

    Reply Reply April 14, 2013

    Just to reaffirm my comment, slow play is a blight on the game. I’m
    Not defending his actions only the way in which he handled it.

  • Mick M

    Reply Reply April 14, 2013

    Yeah gotta feel for Guan a bit, no real consistency with that rule. He should have played a round with he is a fast player! An overreaction alright! The bloke is still there because of the rules. All that aside, a great lesson for all of us was his next shot in which he put the last unlucky shot out of his mind and hit one close.

    • Cameron

      Reply Reply April 14, 2013

      Mick: I was initially gunna write about how Tiger handled this situation. It was impressive and to me highlights that he is back. His 5th shot was a beauty and I’m not sure he would have hit such a good shot last year. I reckon he is back big time and for me, has handled this debacle really well. It was a terrible bit of luck in the first instance and the entire thing has escalated out of control – which seems to be the order of the day in this media rich world.

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