Sunday, 22 July, 2018

Phil Mickelson incurs weird penalty for hitting moving ball at US Open

Phil Mickelson makes the cut but not the way you would expect Modal Trigger Phil Mickelson Getty Images
Cassandra Gardner | 17 June, 2018, 00:29

"I don't mean disrespect by anybody", Mickelson told Fox.

Phil Mickelson's 48th birthday took a freaky twist on Saturday as he was penalised for deliberately hitting a moving ball in the third round of the US Open. Instead of letting his ball come to rest, Mickelson smacked it back toward the hole, taking a two-stroke penalty.

That was a 2-stroke penalty and Mickelson ended up with a 9 on the hole.

And yet on the par-four 13th hole at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club in Southampton, N.Y., Mickelson ran down his bogey putt and struck the ball again while it was still moving.

"I think he just snapped". After racing his bogey putt past the hole, he bizarrely and inexplicably jogged down after his ball before putting it back up the hill while it was still rolling. I took the 2-shot penalty and moved on. "I just finally did".

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If Mickelson's outburst was indeed a shot at the USGA he wouldn't be the first player to have some qualms with the conditions at Shinnecock; Bryson DeChambeau burst out earlier this week, calling Thursday's round "clown golf".

The 2018 U.S. Open is well underway.

Not a good look for the birthday boy, who apparently is simply becoming a grumpy old man.

A loophole that some will consider against the general ethos of the game, Mickelson confirmed that there were "multiple times he wanted to do it" before today's incident on the 13th. One problem: he didn't wait for the ball to stop moving.

The most recent time something like this happened at a major tournament was John Daly at the 1999 U.S. Open at Pinehurst, when he hit a moving ball on the green en route to an 83 and a dead-last finish. "As a result, he incurred a two stroke penalty for a breach of Rule 14-5. I would gladly take the two shots over continuing that display".

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