Posted April 14, 2013

Debate still raging over Tiger Woods’ penalty drop at the Masters

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From Augusta.com

From Augusta.com

Tiger Woods’ 15th-hole penalty drop during the second round of the Masters on Friday stirred up controversy throughout the final two days of the tournament.

After his third shot from 87 yards out hit the pin and caromed into the water, Woods chose to take a one-shot penalty and play his fifth shot from the area of his original shot, resulting in a putt for bogey.

But many have questioned whether he dropped the ball in the correct spot, leading Augusta National officials to review the play.

The Augusta Chronicle posted the above side-by-shot photo that appears to show Woods did indeed drop the ball in the same spot.

From the Huffington Post:

At question is whether that violates Rule 26-1, which states that the ball should be dropped as nearly as possible to the spot where it was last played.

If it’s determined that Woods took his drop in the wrong spot, the penalty is two strokes. He could face disqualification for signing an incorrect score.

“I went back to where I played it from, but went two yards further back and I tried to take two yards off the shot of what I felt I hit,” Woods said Friday after he signed for a 71, leaving him three shots out of the lead. “And that should land me short of the flag and not have it either hit the flag or skip over the back. I felt that was going to be the right decision to take off four (yards) right there. And I did. It worked out perfectly.”


86 comments
Josefuribe1
Josefuribe1

I thought there was another option for Tiger to drop the ball when landing in a frontal hazard, which is to drop the ball in a straight line from the pin and where it last crossed the hazard, with no limit to the distance back.  With this option, Tiger could have played it 2 yards back or 20 yards back from the initial shot.  I learnt this in a golf rules summary booklet.  Is this option no longer valid, or the booklet I got is just wrong?

abeable7
abeable7

Here's an idea for everyone who is not here just to either bash everything Tiger ever does or to justify everything he ever does.  Why don't we bring up rule 33-7 that allows for a penalty to be assessed after a scorecard has been signed, but not disqualified.  That rule is only 2 years old and has not been used yet, at least not in a major.  Jim Nantz and Nick Faldo made fools of themselves hounding the rules officials for not applying the old rules that called for disqualification when an incorrect scorecard is signed.  While we are at it, why don't we lobby for 26-1 be amended to specify a certain distance from the original spot that the ball can be dropped.  Closest to the point of the original spot would be in a divot.  Would that be fair?  Of course not.  26-1 should be amended to require a drop within one club length so that a player is not doubly penalized by having to play out of a divot.  Golf should be fair for all players in all circumstances.  It should not matter whether it is the number 1 golfer in the world or an amateur.   

YouAndYourHorse
YouAndYourHorse

For the Tiger haters who repeatedly speak to his "lack of moral fiber and integrity," I can't help but wonder what we'd find if we examined your every thought, every word, every action, and every website viewed for any 2 week period. If you feel comfortable minimizing your indiscretions because you've deemed them not as weighty as Tiger's (or anyone at whom you're currently lobbing insults) that's your business; having said that, we all have parts of our lives about which I'm convinced we'd be terribly embarrassed if it were on the front page of every paper. Attention all hypocrites: tread lightly as you cast stones. Tiger is morally defective, as are you, as am I. He's also the world's greatest golfer. Applaud and appreciate his tremendous skill, avoid emulating his relationship habits. Seems simple enough...

Betty1
Betty1

Rules committee SAW no infraction and that should have been the end of it.  A tired, mentally drained and clearly upset Tiger Woods trying to describe how far he dropped a ball is not a reason to change what the Rules Committee SAW.  In short, I don't care what Tiger said.  The video coupled with the photograph shows why the Rules Committee initially stated there was no infraction.  We now know there was none.  Tiger made a LEGAL DROP.  End of this story which is really the story of the lynch mob 2013 Masters.   It was really a preservation of Jack's jacket count they were after, nothing more.  If you cannot produce the name, address, phone, and time of caller, sit down.

BudCrites
BudCrites

Cheatah Woods is nothing but a cheater.  He cheated on his wife.  He cheated taking EPO and Steroids.  He cheated with this drop at the Masters.  I'm so sick of the "Golf Elitest" shoving golf history down our throats week in and week out (Ever watch a Yankee v Boston game and they show the 1958 meeting whilst the "Live" game is ongoing and we finally join them Live in the 7th inning?) and for them to sanction this type of cheating is dispicable. 

 

Greg Norman pulled himself from several matches.  Not Cheatah.   

John_McCarthy_3
John_McCarthy_3

Woods would have passed the majors record if they didn't start "tiger proofing" golf courses.  I don't know what it was but the ruling elite in golf just couldn't stand to watch him dominate all of their friends like little children.  They ended up making all of the courses longer.  Sure, the other golfers "caught up" even though Woods has been consistently ranked the #1 putter in the tour, but that's not what tiger proofing golf courses was.  What they did was make all the relevant holes longer, so Woods wouldn't have such an "unfair" advantage.  Tiger proofing in exchange for a 2 stroke penalty.  This is a lot like when they changed the rules in basketball after a player could dunk from the free-throw line.  Sports are great and everything, but the rules should only be changed after that player comes out of dominance or maybe a 5 year period of allowing them to dominate.  And when you sign a stroke card, that should be it, and both sides should concede it is accurate.  If you got away with something, so be it, blown calls happen all the time in sports and teams have to live with it every single day.  Finalization is preferred to abstract perfectionism in the sports arena.  Sure, Tiger made his mistakes.  But that was Joe Paterno's fault anyway, as far as most of you are probably concerned.

RandyHayes
RandyHayes

he cheated.the Masters and the PGA blew it.he should have been DQ'd.i watched the last round hoping Tiger would get beat and he did.Time well spent i'd say.

if i had younger kids i WOULD NOT want them to follow ANY part of TIGERS path.He's despicable.

flamecct
flamecct

Everyone seems to be focused on Rule 26-1 a however Rule 26-1b doesn't have a limit on how far back the player must drop.

 

b. Drop a ball behind the water hazard, keeping the point at which the original ball last crossed the margin of the water hazard directly between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind the water hazard the ball may be dropped; or

JuSayin
JuSayin

Since we are all so concerned about integrity..........for those who thought Tiger should DQ......he demeaned the integrity of the game......he is a cheater off the course and on..he ruined the Masters forever......(sound familiar).......

 

Say "ummmmm......my bad."

RandyHayes
RandyHayes

DID HE SIGN AN INCORRECT SCORE CARD OR NOT?IT APPEARS HAT HE DID.SHOULD HAVE GOT dq'd.don't you wonder what would have happened if the golfer involved wouldn't have been Tiger and been one that was in say 70th place?

WilliamWaite
WilliamWaite

This was stolen from Tiger Woods. He was following his usual pattern of working his way up the leaderboard to lead on Saturday morning, and then to crush his opposition untill the back 9 on Sunday when he takes his foot off the gas a bit to make it more interesting. After the boondoggle on Friday and then the 2 shot surprise on Saturday morning, his focus wasn't on the golf game any more. Which other golfer could survive this. Mr. Scott was very lucky that this occured as Tiger was certainly on his way to victory. It's a pseudo victory, nothing to be proud of for him or Australia.

 

JaLaBar64
JaLaBar64

I think it is pathetic how much hatred and vitriol people who don't know him have for Tiger for whatever reason.  And those people are more pathetic by far.  It is a good thing that most of them aren't worth a damn, thus their opinions utterly meaningless, or Tiger might be hurt by it.  I think he's probably smart enough to realize that they are wastes of oxygen not worth a moment's thought.

T23
T23

I don't know much about the rules of Golf, but it does indeed look like Tiger got screwed out of 2 strokes which may have cost him the Masters via losing his focus and the actual stroke penalty.  The PGA put him between a rock and a hard place.  Due to his personal history had he complained he wouldn't have come across well, even if he was legitimate about the validity of where he dropped the ball.

 

Tiger Woods should just opt out of tournaments that he doesn't have to play for rank but are more of a favor to PGA sponsors and top brass.  Everytime he shows up the PGA makes bank.  I wonder how many people tuned out after his final putt.  Millions of dollars lost in audience I'm sure.

kjbord
kjbord

Photo schmoto! The Player SAID he dropped farther back. Why can't we take him at his word?

hal3
hal3

good drop - bad penalty.  

Lance
Lance

In the side-by-side, he did indeed stand further back (see his left feet and the fact that he look smaller). The question is by how much? In the video TGC showed, it appears to be around 2-ft.

In any case, this is a rule that need to be defined better. Why don't just make it "within 1 club length" instead of "as close as possible"?

BreakTheBench
BreakTheBench

Love all of these casual golf "fans" coming out of the woodwork to comment, too. 

BreakTheBench
BreakTheBench

I love these people who want video evidence as if that worked when they decided it was inconclusive the first time. Glad the Augusta paper figured it out. 

rpdflyer
rpdflyer

Hero-worshippers often have trouble listening to and accepting factss when someone tells them their hero has done something wrong. And they conjure up photos and make irrelevant excuses that contradict the video evidence, and their hero's own words. Here are the simle facts: Golfers are responsible for knowing the rules and following them. If they have a question they can summon a rules official. If they choose not to , and break a rule, even unknowingly and then sign their scorecard, they are disqualified. Just try to focus on these facts. Until this week this understanding provided the backbone of the game. It and the Masters will never be looked at the same way again.

wizardphoto
wizardphoto

 @abeable7 Once the officials ruled there was no infraction  ..  that should have been the end of it  ..  regardless of people calling  ..  which is rediculous  ..  what if Tiger had won the Masters  ..  then gave his interview?   ..   take away the title?  ..  officials should be banned from golf  ..  and I am not a Tiger fan  ..  but let's be fair!!

SeaWest4700
SeaWest4700

 @abeable7 Yeah! I agree. Tiger's "questionable drop" was called into attention well before he signed his card. The rules officials reviewed the evidence and concluded that he did not violate the drop rule. Therefore, Tiger was not notified of any infraction. He then signed his card .. a card that he thought was a correct card as he was not aware that he had broken any rule. It was retroactively determined that he broke the drop rule and then was assessed a penalty. It was only then that the fallout was that Tiger THEN was guilty of signing an incorrect scorecard. The 33-7 rule was specifically introduced to prevent a DQ of a player who had no knowledge that he/she had committed an infraction. Get over it haters! We just had a bomb kill and maim people @ the Boston Marathon and some dingbats still find this worthy of their umbrage. Get some f-in perspective people.

SeaWest4700
SeaWest4700

 @BudCrites Where is your info about Tiger using EPO or ssteroids. Both would be stupid. EPO is not needed for Golf as it is not an aerobic sport and Steroids would reduce the flexibility needed to play top level golf. Get your facts straight or produce the proof. Otherwise you are merely demonstrating your bias, ignorance, and incompetence.

Betty1
Betty1

 @BudCrites

 Greg Norman is a bigot and a cheater.  Greg Norman is not fit to carry Tiger's clubs as a caddie.

SeaWest4700
SeaWest4700

 @John_McCarthy_3 Well said. I never considered how much harder it would be for Tiger to win as much as he does because of the changes in course design specifically made to remove Tiger's initially "unfair advantage."  When Jack was outdriving everyone on tour by 25 to 50 yards, there were no course adjustments made to limit his game. It is an interesting question to pose to Jack. On the other hand, Tiger is still competing against the elite of his day, as did Jack. In fact, it can be argued that Jack actually had greater competition in his career because of the number of great players against whom he competed, many of which had special skills that were particularly suited for some of the majors (Arnie for the Masters, Lee and Tom for the Open, Greg, Lee, Tom for the Brit Open), etc.

Betty1
Betty1

 @John_McCarthy_3

 Those two words, "tiger proofing", their own words, not yours, is why any real bona fide golfer knows Tiger is as great or even greater than Jack Nicklaus without the 18.  These people have done a lot to hurt Tiger and we know it.  Imagine what they have done that we don't know about.   Now we know and I am certain he knows as well, that as he draws closer, like he did at this Masters, because he  definitely could have won it, more and more hate will come his way.  Tiger knows but more importantly, we know.   

BudCrites
BudCrites

 @John_McCarthy_3

 Your logic is faulty.  "... you got away with something..."  is not what Golf is all about.  That just sounds like cheat and if you dont get caught all is ok. 

 

You sound like a liberal, its ok, everyone else is doing it.  It must be ok then.  NO ITS NOT.  Rules are Rules.  Unless of course the golf elitest can interpret it anyway they see fit.  The non DQ interpretation is for true no fault gain.  Cheatah purposely dropped 2 yards shorter so he could essentially make the same shot as before.    Nevermind, you cant think logically anway (just look at the Joe paterno dig)  

 

 

 

SeaWest4700
SeaWest4700

 @RandyHayes Again, Tiger DID sign an incorrect card BUT his score AND the shot in quesiton was actually investigated by the Rules Chair (?) and it was determined that his shot was legal. If it was not, Tiger could have been assessed a penalty right then and there. The fact that the Rules Chair was in error was the actual reason that Tiger signed an incorrect card in the first place. He thought his card was legal and even in the eyes of the Rules Chair, it was. Being penalized after the fact is cruel and painful, but acceptable under the rules or in all of the players' eyes. The NEW rule, which DOES APPLY to Tiger or any other golfer in this instance, allows for a player to continue play without DQ if the player signed for an infraction of which they had no knowledge. Get over it. Tiger did not cheat. He made a mistake of which he was unaware. He was penalized; move on. No golfer deliberately cheats on the PGA. That would be ridiculous; there are cameras and spectators and video from any number of sources. It would be folly for a top player to so even more. It might cost them not only a BIG paychgeck, but it might cost them a tournament. Ask Tiger.

BallBuster
BallBuster

 @RandyHayes I'd better the farm that if the 14 year old kid was in the same situation, potentially being DQd after a drop and asking the tour official if he was okay and being told yes, etc,,, and the committee also ruled to let him play, 99% of people would laud and praise the committee for showing good judgement in their decision.  They'd be so glad that rule was installed.  But since it's Tiger the haters for whatever reason spew...

BallBuster
BallBuster

 @WilliamWaite As an OSU Buckeye and not wanting Tiger to pass Jack Nicklaus, I'd agree with that! 

RandyHayes
RandyHayes

 @JaLaBar64 are you in a fog or what?Tiger isn't exactly an example i would want my kids to follow.And it has EVERYTHING to do with character and NOTHING to do with race.

SportPage
SportPage

 @JaLaBar64 People don't need to know Tiger personally to form an opinion of his lack of moral fiber and integrity. He's provided more than enough evidence of that through his actions.

scp1957
scp1957

 @T23 Please, please, please...the Committee ruled correctly. Did Tiger not agree with their ruling, he would've sulked all weekend long. We all know him well enough to know that he would have. 

 

The pictures above have absolutely NOTHING to do with the reason why the Committee penalized him. In truth, he should've dropped the ball 30 YARDS to his left. Or, at least somewhere along the line that runs from the hole to where his ball LAST entered the water.

 

Where he HIT the ball from has utterly no bearing on the matter whatsoever. He never had the option of dropping the ball where he hit the shot.

BallBuster
BallBuster

That's what I keep saying!  How stupid not to have a definitive distance in club lengths.  As close as possible?  What if he dropped 6 inches away and someone whined he could have gone only 3??  Why not penalized anyone who doesn't go into his own divot??  Anyways, he followed protocol and I doubt idiots like Norman and others if they were in that boat and were okayed to play would have dropped out.  Talk is so cheap.@Lance

Cool
Cool

 @rpdflyer I imagine that while you sit on your couch and drink a beer, it makes you just about the smartest golfer ever to live, and probably the most honest one who would never break a rule unknowingly, because, you are perfect in all things that involve the game of golf.  You have never taken a drop and thought that since it was two yards behind your previous spot that it was acceptable, because of course you know that rule book up and down.    

I guess what I am trying to say in a kind way, is that you sound like an idiot, but I mean that in the kindest way and knowing full well the rules of being kind.

xcmitch3
xcmitch3

 @rpdflyer The only thing is that the rules officials had told Tiger he had not committed a penalty before he signed his card. Its not his fault they cleared him and then after he signed his card went back and said "oh wait we messed up you actually did break the rules." "So now your disqualified beacuse we messed up." Plus its stupid that a viewer can call in a let officials know they made a mistake.  I don't think the NBA allows viewers to call in and let refs know they missed a goal tending or a foul. 

SeaWest4700
SeaWest4700

 @BudCrites  @John_McCarthy_3 If "rules are rules" then Tiger is still within the rules .. specifically the new rule that allows for penalizing of a player without a disqualification. Despite what Tiger said about his drop, the question has not clearly been answered in that evidence is not conclusive that he dropped out of the legal zone. That is, Tiger may have dropped his ball close to his original site because he miscalculated exactly where that site was. True, his intent was to drop 2 paces back but he may not have in fact done so. Therefore, if he was within the rules "by accident" should he be penalized because his intent was not to drop there? That would be an interesting question to ponder.

scp1957
scp1957

 @BallBuster  @RandyHayes It's past time to give them the benefit of the doubt. They're bigots, plain and simple, most all of them.

JustinM
JustinM

 @RandyHayes  @JaLaBar64 Then you are kind of pointing your kids in the wrong direction. As a golfer, he is everything I'd want my kids to follow: dedicated, talented, student of the game, student of history of the game, respectful of those who came before him and a pioneer for his race and for golf in general around the world. As for his personal indiscretions (we all have made them in some form, just not all in public), I wouldn't want my kids looking up to someone for personal guidance whom they didn't know personally regardless of how squeaky clean their public image was (remember how everyone saw Tiger as a family man and father before the adultery came out - false idols are silly). It's kind of my job as their parent to set that example.

RayClay
RayClay

 @SportPage  @JaLaBar64

 YOU ARE AN IMBECILE!!!....If you are going to be smart, say or print something smart...Majority of Americans first marriage end in divorce because their partner HIDE feelings and or opinions until later......PEACE and HAPPINESS is an individual's right and his PURSUIT of HAPPINESS with LINDSEY VONN has you and most AMERICANS OUTRAGED!!!...Unfortunately, your AGENDA IS SOOOOOO TRANSPARENT.....DO NOT FORGET THE MASTERS EXCLUDED BLACKS AND THIS PENALTY WREAKS OF RACISM!!!!!!....The MASTERS rule official determined initially TIGER did no WRONG, and then PENALIZD HIM LATER WITHOUT CLEARLY EXAMINING THE INDIVIDUAL SHOTS!!!....DISGRACEFUL!!!!..

SeaWest4700
SeaWest4700

 @scp1957  @T23 Wrong! That is exactly where he has an option to hit his shot.... as well as dropping along the proper line ...etc.

MyThought
MyThought

 @BallBuster  @Lance 

Greg Norman disqualified HIMSELF from competition TWICE:

 

1990 Palm Meadows Cup

Going into the third round, it was appeared that a classic battle was about to unfold, as Greg Norman had a one-shot lead over Curtis Strange. However, on the driving range he found out that on the first day he had taken an illegal drop from a water hazard. When told of the problem Norman disqualified himself, thus losing a chance at the first-place check of $160,000.

 

1996 Canon Greater Hartford Open

Defending champion Greg Norman, who shared the first-round lead, was disqualified before the third round when it was found that the ball he was using was improperly stamped and not certified by the USGA.

 

bjb57
bjb57

 @xcmitch3  @rpdflyer

 This is wrong.  If you listen to the Masters rules official explaining the series of events, the committee, in fact, did not discuss the issue with Tiger at all on Friday.  So your version is wrong.  They did not tell him anything one way or the other on Friday. 

scp1957
scp1957

 @JustinM  @RandyHayes  @JaLaBar64 I'd add that Tiger seemed to have been following his own father's example. Most of the bad habits kids pick up are learned at home. 

SeaWest4700
SeaWest4700

 @HDB2  @RayClay  @SportPage  @JaLaBar64 Actually, one thing that bugs me ... as an Asian .. is that Tiger Woods is more Asian than he is Black. He is 1/2 Thai (and treated like a long lost son when he plays in Asia) and about 1/8 Cherokee Indian (or some Native American ancestry)!!

mizunoman
mizunoman

 @scp1957  

Read the rule dude. he has two options when dropping the ball. he can choose the line of where the ball last crossed the hazard by keeping that spot between him and the flag or he can choose to go back to where he played his original shot. he chose the latter. but he was supposed to drop as close to where he played his last shot which he apparently did not do.

learn the rules man.

 

scp1957
scp1957

 @HDB2  @RayClay  @SportPage  @JaLaBar64 You still have it wrong. It isn't how close to his original spot that's relevant to the rule by which he was penalized. Rather, it was which spot through which a line from the hole was to be drawn, along which Tiger should have dropped the ball, no nearer the hole. He actually should have been roughly 30 YARDS to the left, because that's where the ball last entered the hazard.

scp1957
scp1957

 @RayClay  @SportPage  @JaLaBar64 The reverse is the truth, Ray. The Committee first cleared him, before he even entered the scorer's tent. Later, they were informed that they may have been in error, so they took a thorough look and interviewed his partners and all three caddies, as well as Tiger. Only then did everyone realize that Tiger chose the wrong line and should have taken a 2-stroke penalty.  

 

You'll note that he accepted it; that's because he knew that they were right, having had it broken down for him. 

 

The Committee was also correct in not DQ'ing him, because they had made an incorrect ruling earlier. The new "technology" rule, governing this phenomenon of armchair QB's effecting the competition, was meant for exactly such occasions as this was. 

HDB2
HDB2

 @RayClay  @SportPage  @JaLaBar64 

Yep, it's pretty clear isn't it? If there were Phil Mickelson or Bubba Watson, nobody would have given a damn.  So if this picture is correct, he didn't sign an incorrect card, regardless of what his intent was, he apparently dropped extremely close to his first shot . . . even though he didn't believe he did.  Well at least all the Tiger haters can ruminate on the picture of Lindsey Vonn sitting in the hot tub in Tiger's private jet popping Champagne as we was leaving the parking lot yesterday.  Not bad for Black Bhuddist, Democrat huh?  Drives all the rednecks crazy!! Love that!!

mizunoman
mizunoman

 @scp1957 

you need to get off this wrong line thing man. read the rules.

 

scp1957
scp1957

 @SportPage  @JaLaBar64 He did not improve his lie. He used the wrong line. You folks have giant egos that get in the way of changing your opinions to an altered set of facts. Please, God, don't let any of them be engineers. We don't need any more collapsed walkways or exploding spacecraft or burst levees.

scp1957
scp1957

 @bjb57  @xcmitch3  @rpdflyer It isn't relevant whether or not they told him. What matters is that they had made a ruling, which fact disallows any further penalty, beyond the 2 strokes for his mistaken  drop. That's why he wasn't DQ'd.

BudCrites
BudCrites

 @JaLaBar64  @bjb57  @xcmitch3  @rpdflyer

 It was not added JUST FOR THIS SITUATION.  It was added for when a player did not gain by his disregard for the rules.  For example, when the player grounded his club is a supposed sand trap, that didnt have any sand in it.  Its not for ignorance of rules or the distortion of rules for the players benefit. 

Say Cheatah Woods drops it "as close as possible" and plunks one in the water again?  As it turned out, the extra 2 yards (by his own admission) benefited his next shot and the following putt.  SO NO this was not the SITUATION they golf elites had in mind.  But, hey the Golf Elites made sure every announcer knew to Shut the #ell up about it on Sunday. 

AlbertWayne
AlbertWayne

 @SportPage  You have no clue and lack any knowledge of golf. The rule was changed and you just can't except reality!

SportPage
SportPage

@JaLaBar64 "There is a FAIRLY new rules" ...

- - - - -

Tiger improved his lie and signed an incorrect score card. There is nothing "FAIRLY new" about those rules.

 

He should have been DQ'd, but the officials didn't have the brass to stand up to him, and Tiger didn't have the integrity to withdraw, although his lack of integrity is no surprise.

 

JaLaBar64
JaLaBar64

 @bjb57  @xcmitch3  @rpdflyer

 Tiger did not know there was any issue at all until Saturday morning.  It's fair to question whether Tiger deserved the penalty at all.  However, it is not fair to question what went on after that, as it DID follow the rules of golf.  There is a FAIRLY new rules, added in 2011 for reasons that have nothing to do with Tiger, that was added for JUST THIS SITUATION, that allows for a player to avoid disqualification for an incorrect scorecard IF his score was changed for whatever reason AFTER his round was complete and he had signed an at-that-time correct scorecard.  This is exactly what happened, and it was handled exactly as it should have been handled... if you agree that Tiger deserved a penalty at all.