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If you’ve been paying attention this summer to all of them, and rules which I agree with onethen you know the answer to this question. What hundred percent, no exceptions. In 1968 we do Dustin Johnson and Anna Nordqvist have in witnessed Roberto DeVincenzo sign an incorrect common? Hint: It involves American golf’s govscorecard and lose The Masters. In the 2010 PGA erning body, the USGA making separate controChampionship we saw Dustin Johnson miss a versial and baffling rules decisions within a span playoff because he grounded his club in a bunof 22 days. ker on the 72nd hole. Incredible, heart-wrenchOn June 19 in the final round of the men’s US ing and dramatic moments but the USGA must Open, Johnson was assessed a one-shot penalty call out players who violate the rules. They have after his round because the “preponderance of to take immediate action to disqualify a player evidence” from a high-definition video replay of who fails to abide by them, despite the criticism his pre-putt routine on the 5th green showed his and potential embarrassment. ball wavered. On July 10 in a playoff to determine In the case of Anna Nordqvist, the USGA the women’s US Open champion, Anna Normake the proper ruling assessing a two-shot dqvist was assessed a two-shot penalty because penalty, which was confirmed by use of hightelevision video showed she accidently touched definition video replay. In some cases in golf the sand with her 5-iron before she hit her shot. tournaments, video reply is required and necesShe lost the prestigious title to Brittany Lang. sary to make the correct decision, although a The USGA has had a pretty rough go of time limit should be imposed, like one-hole or 20 things recently, having banned the use of anminutes. chored putters, which made a lot of golfers like The USGA’s summer scorecard reads 0 – 2 me angry. A few years ago, for the first time with clumsy rules situations which have overever in golf history, a penalty was shadowed two national champiassessed to a player based onships. Call USGA officials on a viewer calling into obnoxious or ingrates or PGA offices to comyou-fill-in-the-blank but I plain. Now, in the case believe we need golf’s with DJ, ranked No. 2 in governing body to enthe world, we have the force the rules and to call USGA doing the unfathout world-class players who by Tom Gorman omable on its biggest stage, might show indifference or igtaking almost two hours and six holes norance. Video cameras and instant of play to inform Johnson that he might be asreplays are here and golf had better get used sessed a one-shot penalty because high-definito it in future high-profile events. tion video footage showed his ball shaking while Tom Gorman has been a golf writer since he addressed it on the 5th green. 1992 and has observed bad officiating in golf Rory McIlroy called the situation “amateur and many other sports. hour.” Jordan Spieth said it was a “joke.” Rickie Fowler called it “laughable” and there is no reason to disagree. The situation should have been handled differently by the USGA but technology has intruded into high-level, televised golf. It has replaced the practicality and spirit of the rules with microscopic, super slow-motion high definition replays to try to prove a point. If someone is cheating we want to see it clearly on replay and call a penalty. What should have happened in Johnson’s case is that a rules official walking with the \group should have been consulted and if that official gave the okay that no penalty was committed then “Voila” that’s it. But golf is a sport that loves its rules and it has a history of strict interpretation and adherence

Should Video Replay Be Used to Access Rules Infractions? YES

88 | | August 2016

August 2016  
August 2016