Breach of etiquette?
By mustang6560 on 10/1/12

Ryder Cup Discussion Question

Should Francesco Molinari have conceded Tiger Woods' par putt on the 18th hole yesterday?

In my opinion, absolutely.

I know I said I would rather see the United States lose than have the Ryder Cup end in a tie, however, under the circumstances, Francesco should have conceded Tiger's two- or three-foot putt.

The Ryder Cup was effectively over by the time the two reached their tee shots on the 18th and Team Europe had already begun celebrating. Martin Kaymer secured the "winning" half-point against Steve Stricker that ensured the trophy wouldn't change hands for at least another two years. Since good sportsmanship is more important than winning in the Ryder Cup, the two proceeded to finish the hole.

Following Tiger's chip and Francesco's putt, the two were both within five feet of the hole. At that point, the gentlemanly thing to do for Francesco would have been to look at Tiger and say, "Good, good?". Instead, he made Tiger putt it and he missed. It's easy to say, "Well Tiger should have made it." But, the cup was over and I'm willing to bet the majority of the 24 players in the Ryder Cup would have missed it too. I don't want to sound like a sore loser, but Francesco missed an opportunity to do the right thing.

What is your opinion?

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Image via Flickr, TourProGolfClubs

[ comments ]
beisenhauer says:
I guess Francesco isn't Jack, is he? On the other hand, maybe Tiger isn't Tony, either.
jkyleolson says:
I'm not a fan of conceding putts during competition, no matter how short the putt.
nickmomrik says:
I couldn't believe he made Tiger putt that and neither could the announcers. Tiger sure didn't make Molinari putt his, which was almost exactly the same length. If the outcome wasn't already decided, Tiger makes that putt every time, but what's the point of making him hole it at that point? Poor sportsmanship.
nickmomrik says:
BTW, only having to get half of the 28 points to "retain" the cup might be the dumbest thing in golf. If there is a tie they should go to sudden death and force a new player to play each hole until one side wins a hole.
GBogey says:
I think Ollie should have stepped in with both of them back on the fairway. What was the sense in playing out the hole anyway.
cvargo says:
I agree. Don't concede putts in competition
Duke of Hazards says:
I read a golf channel article that explains the situation >

makes it seem like the neck-stepping was Olazabal's decision, not Molinari's.
BlameMe says:
From what I have seen in interviews after, Molinari wanted to concede on the fairway but was told to finish the hole. Woods could of conceded Molinari's putt before his little chip onto the green from the edge and it would all be done, as Woods said it was all over by then so what's the point. Also don't forget Kuchar making Westwood putt an 8 inch putt to win his match 3&2. Simple solution to stop all this "bad sport BS" is make everyone putt out then, I'd be happy with that.
...the Murseless says:
Woods could just as easily have conceded Molinari's putt first - even before he chipped onto the green. And once they were both on the green, Molinari's ball was inside of Woods' after all.

At any rate, Woods also could have initiated the 'good/good?' discussion - why not question his sportsmanship? Yes, you do sound like a sore loser :)
jrbizzle says:
Neither player should have had to hole out. Jose Maria knows better, but he tries too hard to be like Seve. The match was already won, there was no reason to put those last two guys through the ringer.

Jack, and many captains and players before him would never have let that happened.
jrbizzle says:
And FWIW - I do not agree with nicmomrik. The Ryder Cup is all about team competition. If it ends in a tie - you do not send one guy out there to decide it.

So you would either need to send out the entire teams yet again, or better yet - have a tie, as they do now.
legitimatebeef says:
Those dirty europeans. They took our jobs!!!
GolferAnt says:
I don't think it should ever be considered bad sportsmanship just because you didn't give your opponent a free putt
Matt F says:
I questioned it with my FIL (a very big Woods fan) and he said good, I hope he makes him putt. A couple of feet is not a gimme, 6-8 inches where's the babble about Kuch?
C-4 says:
Putt out, Putt out, putt out...this waw the difference between a tie and a win..i would not want to keep the cup just because we tied..i need the outright win...
jezskates says:
There's a lot of talk about not giving putts during competition. While I can understand that philosophy, reality was that it no longer was a competitive environment. With the "winning" point total already achieved, the scene surrounding the vicinity of the 18th was no longer what is considered acceptable for competitive golf. The ruckus audibly heard over the TV broadcast illustrated that the Ryder Cup was in the eyes of the gallery, over.

Concede the putts, and wallow for another two years. Better yet, don't even bother striking the approach shots.
CeeBee says:
Both should have conceeded in the fairway but the fans want to see the final finish. Once on the green could have gone good-good.
wrhall02 says:
If the roles were reversed (USA was guaranteed tie and retain Cup), would Tiger have conceded the putt? And settle for 14-14? My guess is no, so no breach (IMO).
mantajim says:
I can tell that there's not much "match play" competition in the oob golf world. Conceding putts is part of match play. Giving putts early in the match, but not at the end is part of the strategy of match play. However, Molinari made himself look like an ass, the competition had been decided, he should have shown better sportsmanship regardless of what Jose Maria said.
Concede putts in stroke play?, that's another story with a simple ending, never.
Tim Horan says:
Rule one in match play - never concede a putt if it is to win either the match or even a hole.
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