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Lexi Thompson's 4 Stroke Penalty at the ANA


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1 minute ago, Dege said:

 

  In your long post, full of pointless point by points reminds me of the pompous USGA officials trying to pat themselves on the back for "protecting the game".

 

I think @iacas is simply trying to help you understand the rules and why they are applied the way they are. He does not blindly defend the USGA. Many times he has criticised them when it's due. 

You may not want me on your side this time @iacas but I'm totally with you on this one. 

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I've kept up with this thread all day. Read all 20 pages, I can safely say there are two camps and both are represented by this gif

After sleeping on this issue, and subsequently removing some emotion from the analysis, I now think it was handled fairly and nothing should change. In fact, I find myself doubting a bit whether or no

It wasn't a millimeter. Lexi should put her ball back in the same place. It's a pretty simple rule… Yep. Simple rule, really, and she should be glad it's 2017 and she won't be DQed.

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3 minutes ago, Lefty-Golfer said:

so I have read 12 pages of comments on this forum and many more some other places...what I can conclude is golf is still run by a few elites who refuse to listen to the masses...because of their own smugness to the game.

They could have fixed this rule 2, 5 10 years ago, they could assign officials like every other sport or they could like every other governing body use their heads and police the game for the good of the game...it is a sad day for golf. Not because of this rule but because of the lack of leadership and the failure of the sport to itself.

Agree.  The taste it leaves behind is not sweet, but bitter.

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21 minutes ago, Hat said:

Argue about changing the rules, by all means. But that it's correct to win by breaking the rules? Daft. They call that 'football' in the UK - and I'd argue it's a game, not a sport.

Major reason for why I stopped watching football (soccer). The ref doesn't see the dive and gives a penalty, the team scores the penalty and wins 1-0, and everyone complains about the ref and says the diver was 'clever'. Would we want golf to be like that? Umm, no thanks...

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I agree with Erik that this was correctly handled based upon the current rules.

 

I also feel that some improvements could be made to the rules with regards to PGA/LPGA tournaments. I'm going to use some terminology a bit loosely, but you should grasp my general ideas, nonetheless.

- I think that they could finalize a scorecard on a daily basis rather than at the end of the tournament.  No changes in the middle of the next round.  

- No viewer call-ins, but introduce a way to monitor players more closely. Additional Rules Officials (give them a different name, if you prefer) present (1-2 per group) to watch players, or possibly do this via video surveillance.  Make it equal and across the board.  I agree with Erik that we need to have accuracy and strict adherence to the rules, but I feel that it would be best done by professionals rather than home viewers.  

- I wouldn't be against loosening the signing of the scorecard rules in professional golf.  Aside from tradition, I find it somewhat unnecessary that professional players keep their own score.  We don't ask basketball or football teams to record and submit their scores at the end of the game, and I don't see much reason that golfers need to do the same.  Even if you keep the signing of a scorecard, a rule could be added allowing amendments of some variety.

 

Rules are rules, and they should be followed.  I, however, think that the rules could be altered to improve situations such as this.  I haven't spent a ton of time thinking these changes through, so my opinion could change based upon sound counterargurments.

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2 hours ago, Hat said:

I don't play golf to any high standard, but when I put a marker down on the green and replace the ball, I know whether I'm putting it down in the wrong spot, certainly to the degree shown in the video -

EXACTLY - and Lexi knows too. A quarter inch of an inch is a long way and obvious as hell. In her case it was between half an inch and an inch.

I would even go as far as to say that people in this thread who think she did nothing wrong or couldn't see the infraction don't "get" that a high degree of precision is not only easy to achieve when marking/replacing your ball, but expected. It would seem that some think that "close enough is good enough and who cares?"

Unfortunately for Lexi, the rules care.

Here's a little bit of homework for my fellow golfers:

Next time you are playing, just watch your fellow players marking their balls. Especially types you've not met before. Observe how often

1)they push their marker right under the ball and then replace it half an inch in front of their marker to gain a 1 inch advantage. 

2) they approach their ball from the side to mark it and put their marker a little bit shy of where it should be to save doing their back in and then replace it in a dead straight line to gain a three quarter inch advantage  - even on a 20 foot putt. 

3) move the ball forward a couple of inches as they casually  push/flick the marker in and then replace the ball an inch ahead of the marker giving themselves a 4 inch advantage.

I guarantee that you will see ALL THREE scenarios very very soon. The problem is, if you mention it, you're the bad guy and the rest of the round is played under a cloud.

I basically stop myself from looking with some people because it drives me crazy and ruins my day.

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7 minutes ago, Pete said:

Major reason for why I stopped watching football (soccer). The ref doesn't see the dive and gives a penalty, the team scores the penalty and wins 1-0, and everyone complains about the ref and says the diver was 'clever'. Would we want golf to be like that? Umm, no thanks...

Yet, soccer is the biggest sport in the world!...Golf pales compare to the amount of fans soccer has world wide....

Soccer world championship have being won or lost with much controversy about the officiating and you know what? it makes for a great conversation over beers 10yrs later, and the game is growing strong...

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1) It is physically impossible to replace the ball in its exact previous location. That is a fact, and no one can dispute it. You are always going to be a little bit off. I don't care how good you are. If Lexi had lifted the ball, stood, wiped it with her thumb and then replaced it, no one would have noticed anything. Period.

2) When she replaced the ball it was about 1/10" over from where it was. Exact location? No, but see above. I wonder how many players place the ball about 1/10" of an inch or so away from where their original ball position was? Also it didn't look like she gained any advantage from replacing the ball where she did. Zip. It was a tap in.

3) If they wanted to assess a 2 stroke penalty for playing from the wrong place and notify the player of that in the FOLLOWING ROUND, they should give the player the opportunity to re-sign the amended scorecard, and not a 4 stroke penalty for signing an incorrect scorecard. Why? Because in this event, the player was unaware they signed an incorrect scorecard in the first place. Still it shouldn't take until mid-way into the following round to figure out that the player incurred a 2-stroke penalty in the first place.

4) When you sit up in the stands at a game you get to see all the mistakes, all the missed calls the refs make, and the game goes on. The fans have no input. During a golf tournament they have officials on the courses to make rulings. Yet viewers watching on television can call in and inform the tournament of every error taken during a close up of the ball and a hand that someone wouldn't ordinarily see. I think this is BS. What the officials call should be what the officials call. 

* Just my opinion.

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Again, (to all those that post otherwise) the officials still make the ruling.  The fan does not make the ruling.  

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48 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

 At some point the game is over.

1

Right, and that is at the close of competition. As has been stated many, many times.

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6 minutes ago, DrvFrShow said:

1) It is physically impossible to replace the ball in its exact previous location. That is a fact, and no one can dispute it. You are always going to be a little bit off. I don't care how good you are. If Lexi had lifted the ball, stood, wiped it with her thumb and then replaced it, no one would have noticed anything. Period.

2) When she replaced the ball it was about 1/10" over from where it was. Exact location? No, but see above. I wonder how many players place the ball about 1/10" of an inch or so away from where their original ball position was? Also it didn't look like she gained any advantage from replacing the ball where she did. Zip. It was a tap in.

3) If

But this is what she did:

P4040013.JPG

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6 minutes ago, Hategolf said:

Yet, soccer is the biggest sport in the world!...Golf pales compare to the amount of fans soccer has world wide....

Soccer world championship have being won or lost with much controversy about the officiating and you know what? it makes for a great conversation over beers 10yrs later, and the game is growing strong...

Sure. Just look at the reputation of the world governing body FIFA. Doesn't exactly scream integrity does it?  

Every world cup I've watched (1986 onwards) has had controversy at some stage. Faking injury to waste time. Hand of god. Dodgy penalties. Teams playing out a mutually beneficial result that qualifies both to the next stage at the expense of other teams and the integrity of all 22 players.  It's so frequent it is just considered part of the game. 

It's the biggest sport in the world due to simplicity and history. Not because of the spirit or sportsmanship with which it is played or organised. 

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I'm sorry, but having watched the footage in real time it looks quite dodgy to me. This is a well known cheat move (see Lloyd Saltman, who was banned for 3 months from the European Tour a while ago). It is not as if she returned to the putt a few minutes after marking the ball-she did it straight away and it is hard to believe that she didn't know what she was doing.

At best, she doesn't know how to mark the ball properly, which is very hard to believe. She's been busted, and has acted quite sheepishly about the whole thing, which may indicate a degree of mens rea.

The rules are there to protect the field, regardless of whether it was "intentional" or not. The TV viewer is an easy scapegoat, and it is disappointing to see other pros lining up to "diss" the rules of golf.

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35 minutes ago, Dege said:

 

  In your long post, full of pointless point by points reminds me of the pompous USGA officials trying to pat themselves on the back for "protecting the game".

Time to update the rules.  Pure and simple.  

The bolded speaks for SO many people...and I mean hard core legitimate golfers who play and most importantly support the game...

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1 minute ago, weekend hacker1 said:

I'm sorry, but having watched the footage in real time it looks quite dodgy to me. This is a well known cheat move (see Lloyd Saltman, who was banned for 3 months from the European Tour a while ago). It is not as if she returned to the putt a few minutes after marking the ball-she did it straight away and it is hard to believe that she didn't know what she was doing.

At best, she doesn't know how to mark the ball properly, which is very hard to believe. She's been busted, and has acted quite sheepishly about the whole thing, which may indicate a degree of mens rea.

The rules are there to protect the field, regardless of whether it was "intentional" or not. The TV viewer is an easy scapegoat, and it is disappointing to see other pros lining up to "diss" the rules of golf.

Agreed.

I would hope there is a silent majority of other pros that fear to say anything because they would be ridiculed.

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Some of these arguments about which players get more camera coverage, and who is looking and when...yadda...yadda...yadda...remind of a story.

A buddy of mine got caught speeding. He was doing 70mph in 55mph zone. So was everyone else. When he got pulled over he protested that he was just staying with the flow of traffic and that everyone was doing 70mph so why should he get pulled over?

The cop replied,"well, son, have you ever gone fishing?"

My buddy replied, "Yes.."

The cop responded, "you ever catch all the fish?"

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I'll pose a question, a hypothetical.  Say the rules are changed, so that Lexi (as an example) doesn't get penalized today for breaking a rule yesterday.  That's what I read that some people would like.  However, video review shows that the player definitely broke the rule.  This is a sport where personal integrity is paramount.  Do we expect Lexi to do something to correct the situation, to somehow take two extra shots?  That's what a person of integrity would do.  "I deserve a penalty, so I'm going to penalize myself."  Maybe its too late, she finds out after the tournament is over.  Does she DQ herself, give back the trophy and the prize money?  Or does she say to the world, "Yeah, I broke the rule, but I got away with it, I'm now a major winner."  Which of those responses is "good for the game."?  

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4 minutes ago, Lefty-Golfer said:

The bolded speaks for SO many people...and I mean hard core legitimate golfers who play and most importantly support the game...

Speaks for me.

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She cheated and got caught and ultimately paid the price. I think though that once the next round starts someone shouldn't be able to call it in. Rules are rules and you have to follow them. She had to know she was marking it to the side.

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