Cameron Tringale Confesses to PGA Championship Error, Loses More Than $50K
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Good for him, bad for the wallet in the short term. He can play better, look other players in the eye, and make more money with a clear conscience.
I believe we see a lot of missed shorties when a pro gets a tad careless and puts a firm stroke on the ball, or in this case, a whiffed one.
A couple of take aways from this for me.
1) What does addressing the ball have to do with whether a stroke was taken? You can clearly make a stroke without ever addressing the ball. Heck Nicklaus rarely if ever addressed the ball before hitting. So why does Tringale say his uncertainty was about whether he addressed the ball or not? That would only matter, as far as I can tell, if the ball moved, not if a stroke was whiffed. Personally I have never whiffed without knowing that I had whiffed. How do you not know whether you attempted to hit the ball or not? I might not know if YOU were trying to hit the ball but I sure know if I was trying to hit the ball.
2) Why is it not a surprise that a guy doing what he thought was the right thing should be characterized as "bizarre" by Alex Micelli.
Going back to point #1, this "excuse" by the player throws a different light on things for me. It makes me think we do not have (and may ever have) the whole story. When the excuse looks like something that is a pretext then it makes you wonder what really happened. The kindest construction I can put on it is that he misunderstood the rule and mistakenly thought that if he did not address it the whiff did not count as a stroke. Then maybe something happened that made him realize what the rule really said.
A “stroke’’ is the forward movement of the club made with the intention of striking at and moving the ball, but if a player checks his downswing voluntarily before the clubhead reaches the ball he has not made a stroke.
I believe 'intention' is paramount here. Did he intend to strike the ball? Was he waving the club in disgust with no intent to hit the ball?
Well known is down-swinging the club and changing your mind, passing the clubhead over the ball. No stroke taken. Confer Kevin Na.
I suspect Tringale is operating under ignorance and fear. He does not know the rule, or cannot precisely remember the moment, and he very fearful of an armchair viewer calling him out with Tringale being labeled a 'cheater'. He passes on the $50K and secures his good boy reputation.