Good Lord, This Is Getting Stupid
By Kickntrue on 1/21/11
Paddy Harrington has been DQ'd from the Abu Dhabi Championship for signing an incorrect scorecard. This one is ... AWESOME!
On Thursday, he confused everyone with his 11 swing changes. On Friday, he was disqualified from the Abu Dhabi Championship for inadvertently and innocently breaking a rule on the seventh green in his first round.

No one would ever have known if not for an e-mail sent to the European tour from yet another of what seems to be a growing army of TV snitches, as Ian Poulter calls them. And not even golf's latest snitch could have spotted Harrington's crime had he not been on his sofa pressing the pause, rewind, play and slow motion buttons on his high-definition TV.

The amateur rules official noticed that the Irishman's ball moved after Harrington's hand brushed it as he was removing his marker. Since Harrington didn't replace the ball at the original spot, it should have been a two-stroke penalty. Because the penalty wasn't assessed at the time, Harrington signed an incorrect scorecard after Thursday's round, which led to the disqualification.
Check out the video. They determined after watching the video about 60 times that the ball did in fact scoot forward by "about one-and-a-half dimples."

Un-frackin-believable!

I'll just say this... if we're all about this full-accountability down to every last detail- I think it's only right that we get to know who the person who emailed the European Tour is and his email address. It's only right.

What a joke...



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[ comments ]
homermania says:
Clearly he gained advantage here. Lifetime ban.
1/21/11
 
birdieXris says:
The saddest part of all (besides the loser who had to rewind and look gain and again then call it in) is that Paddy wouldn't have gotten a penalty, he wouldve just replaced it. I mean, there was no reason for him to cheat and say it didn't move. I think he legitimately didn't notice and unfortunately he was called on it. :(
1/21/11
 
birdieXris says:
You know, if this keeps up it may actually hurt golf for real. Players are going to start not wanting to be televised if the stupidity of it keeps up. Mark my words. No big names, no ratings. No ratings no money. No money no purses. No purses, well -- no golf. Granted, it's got to get to that point, but really --- that cost Paddy Quite a bit of dough.
1/21/11
 
ForeKris says:
i'm kinda in the middle on this issue. that is a lot of money that they're playing for... they SHOULD know the rules. I have to know the rules of my company and job... they should too.

I think IF TV viewers are going to be allowed to call in, they should HAVE to call in by the end of the player's round. this way the player can add the penalty strokes, and sign an accurate card.

Players aren't getting DQ'd for the violation... they're getting DQ'd because they aren't aware of the violation, and are signing an incorrect scorecard. So... if we're going to be able to call the violation, then the rules officials should make that information available to the players before they sign. If a call doesn't come in while the player is still on the course... too bad!
1/21/11
 
ppinkert says:
"Un-frackin-believable!" is an understatement. And..forgive me but why are they listening to a Couch-Potato anyway?
1/21/11
 
svj says:
there is not a middle ground on this forekris... golf,law,companys,people make stupid rules by making or breaking them only makes the people that made them, look like a fool not the person who broke them... if common sense was common we wouldnt have stupid bs like this wasting time and money on all levels of life
1/21/11
 
svj says:
these 2 guys that called this one in and the other one in from a couple of weeks is probably going to get their own reality tv shows and get huge contracts and it will be called golf hawks,,subtitled sucking the fun out golf everywhere...
1/21/11
 
munk24 says:
@svj The first guy Dave Andrews is a retired author and golf writer and is a big supporter of the Duramed Futures Tour, He tried to alert the tournamnet before Camilo signed his card, but they didnt get info in time. He has been interviewed on here by OOB about a year ago.
1/21/11
 
Kickntrue says:
The problem I have is like birdieXris said- it was an unknown (and unintentional) infraction. You need to know your company rules- but imagine this scenario... it was the best I could come up with. You are browsing oobgolf at work- which is fine. But you click on a story that happens to feature a surprise picture of a girl in a bikini. You know that could be questionable so you quickly click "back." Unbeknown to you, someone was walking behind your cube- and turns you in for "Sexual harassment" for making them feel uncomfortable. Seems to be about the type of crime- and type of extreme punishment. Did you break a rule? Maybe (but maybe not...). Does the punishment fit the crime? No sane person could say "yes."
1/21/11
 
lcgolfer64 says:
After watching the video you can clearly see that he has practiced this move like a magician honing is craft to obviously line him up in the grooves in the green that bee-line straight to the hole... Seriously, wow...

Compare this to let's say football [not the sissy stuff you blokes across the pond call - "footie")- the ref places the ball, the center grabs it and then *omg* moves it! "Clearly getting extra yardage after the ball was placed, right?" [Sarcasm again]

Okay now, I know. Different comparison completely, rules are rules, I get it.

I think the thing that irks me is that they're making these calls (as mentioned by ForeKris) AFTER the fact. Imagine the uproar if BCS Championship, NFL playoff or any game were overturned a day later after someone analyzed the video a gazillion times and then called it in a foul, or holding or step out of bounds.
1/21/11
 
BlameMe says:
If you have to resort to slow motion play back to tell if a player messes up then I don't think any action should be taken, unless the players calls himself on it.

Its a bit like last year when a player called himself after touching a reed while in the bunker, no one saw it while it happened in real time, but when looked in slow motion he did in fact touch the reed and correctly call himself on it and probably not because he saw it but because he felt it.

I also agree with the points birdieXris made.
1/21/11
 
tennesseeboy says:
Personally, I think any rule violation should be enforced if it is discovered. I don't see how you can have legitimate competition otherwise. You can have officials saying "No harm done, we'll forget about it this time". In football if an offensive lineman jumps off side because he forgot the snap count, should everyone just laugh at him and say no harm done. In a pick up game in the backyard, yes. In the NFL, no.

Having said that, It's hard to tell from the low res internet video but it looks like he nudged the ball before the marker was removed from the ground. If he believed that the position of the ball was correct in relation to the marker, then how is that a penalty?
1/21/11
 
Tha Clint says:
What was the guys motivation? did he favor another player in the field? did he have a wager placed somewhere? the answer is we don't know,if someone can call in, e-mail in,or whatever a rules infraction on a pro golfer then someone should be able to watch them for 1 day at there job and see if they commit any rules infractions and dock their pay for the day.
1/21/11
 
Paolo says:
Here's another thought. If TV replays can be used by a person outside of the game of golf to call in infractions then where does it stop? Can I trawl through the archives of say the majors over the past 30 years and call the R&A or USPGA when I spot Tiger or Seve picking up a leaf which moved another leaf which was touching their ball or some such other rule which actually made no difference. Surely if the incident isn't spotted/noticed by players or the tournament officials the it should be left to only the memory of the course.
1/21/11
 
Bryan K says:
This is the reason why I gave up taking the rules of golf so seriously last summer. I mean, I still take them more seriously than about 95% of the people I play with, but come on. My hands shake a little bit all the time, so properly replacing a marked ball is a rule I probably accidentally break all the time. THe alternative is taking waaaay too long to replace the ball on the green. My regular golfing partner always tells me "you don't have to be so precise when you're marking your ball", but I always counter that with "I gotta practice because I might just be in a tournament one day......"
1/21/11
 
lcgolfer64 says:
@Paolo
Summarized nicely.
1/21/11
 
tennesseeboy says:
@Kickntrue - I disagree with your comparison with an office situation. The rules of the office (I think it's true of most offices) is that the boss is allowed to make a judgement call. She can sit down with everyone involved and talk it out. You can explain and apologize. There is a no harm done rule in the office. I don't see the no harm done rule in golf or any rule which allows an official to let it slide. I do agree that the PGA may need to makes some rules about how "TV snitch" violations are handled.
1/21/11
 
windowsurfer says:
TV tattlers taketh, TV revenues giveth. Two sides of the same coin.
1/21/11
 
Banker85 says:
dumb dumb dumb. its all dumb. I think paddy should have just remarked to cover himself. even if he didnt know he moved the ball he know he touched it so it could have moved so just remark and bam. still dumb sumb sumb.
1/21/11
 
Nethmonkey says:
placing a ball down in front of a marker is such an inexact method as it is. If he had to remark it, pick it up and replace it how do you know he wouldn't have ended up with a greater advantage? dumb penalty. They need to do away with the signing a wrong scorecard rule and just assess the penalty if they are going to allow things like this.
1/21/11
 
SweetJazz says:
If some yahoo decides to call in after the fact then the player in question should only be penalized by adding strokes to his/her score. If it happens in real time, then an official should talk to the player after their round is complete. Similar to what happened to Johnson at the PGA Championship last year. The player can then accept the penalty prior to signing their card.
1/21/11
 
Beekeeper45 says:
WOW!! Thank goodness for slow motion...as said above this is stupid. I guess they will have to go back to leaving the ball on the green and play it as is, or leave the viewer out of the equation.
1/21/11
 
cjgiant says:
@tennesseeboy : "If he believed that the position of the ball was correct in relation to the marker, then how is that a penalty?"

@Nethmonkey: "placing a ball down in front of a marker is such an inexact method as it is"

I agree with these statements and that the intent of the rules be followed. I also agree it should be up to the fellow players and officials (or even fans at event, I could live with).

In this case, although admittedly I was looking for it, I did see the ball rock. I could not tell if Padraig was paying attention enough to notice he hit it (was he already starting to look at the line). If he did notice it and was too lazy or didn't know rule and tried to play off the brush, I think he deserved the penalty. If he just didn't notice, I'd say bad luck, but he should have been notified on the course of his mistake and taken the penalty. Otherwise, he luckily escaped with one.
1/21/11
 
Kurt the Knife says:
1-1/2 dimples?
moved 1-1/2 bloody dimples?
On my NXTs, thats maybe 4-6mm.
7590 yds...6,940,296 mm... a presumed advantage of 0.00000086%
Really?
DQ?
There is some real crazy goin' on right there.
1/21/11
 
stedar says:
Paolo nailed it - if an infringement is not noticed on the day by player(s) or officials, then it is not a "DQ" I'm all for accountability, but jeepers, rules need to be classified correctly and/or changed so as the only people permitted to call an infringement are those that are authorized to. How did it come to be a TV watcher can call such stuff anyway - change the rules and get on with golf...
1/21/11
 
Kurt the Knife says:
"Surely if the incident isn't spotted/noticed by players or the tournament officials the it should be left to only the memory of the course."
-Paolo
Exactly.
If you're not on the course, what u say don't mean squat.
1/21/11
 
RDow says:
The rule says you have to replace the ball in it's original spot, but what defines the spot. If it indeed the exact point in space, that is virtually impossible. Therefore the rule has some leeway in it, whether by design or not. I think this should qualify as "close enough" to not warrant a penalty.

And like has been said already, had he placed the ball exactly where it ended up after he touched it, that would not have been a penalty, since the act of placing it back in front of the marker is so inexact.

Infact, it may have rolled back to where it was BEFORE he marked it orignally!
1/21/11
 
Bernie Duffer says:
So the ball moved a tiny bit by accident and it seemed to move back into the same position. Here is the thing...when are the golf officials going to cut the phone lines during tournaments? They have no business letting television viewers have an impact on the outcome of professional golf tournaments. Have a rules official with each group. Have actual officials officiate like every other type of athletic event. The pro golfers are supposed to police themselves. When they don't do it correctly, have an actual official set them straight or DQ them. The practice of listening to viewers and reviewing video tape in reaction seems very wrong to me.
1/21/11
 
Beekeeper45 says:
@Bernie Duffer, Highly agree with your statement above...cut the cords!!!
1/21/11
 
svj says:
munk24, who he is or what he does or even if he had gave birth to oobgolf calling in rules from your living room, does nothing to help golf, players, rules of the game, it just for self interest... hey look at me blogging world, i was the guy that called in that bs at hyundai
1/21/11
 
homermania says:
@Bernie, that's the best way to say it yet!
1/22/11
 
Matt F says:
Have to agree with most of the comments here. When are the viewers going to get something that resembles a life FFS. They're probably grumpy fat bastards that are jealous of someone else's skills. Here is another good article on the stupidity of this particular rule. www.guardian.co.uk/sport/lawrence-donegan-golf-b
1/22/11
 
Bryan K says:
tennesseeboy and kickntrue: Human resources happens to be my specialty, and I just finished taking a course on sexual harassment law. The deal is, if a person is fired for a one time offense because he accidentally downloaded a scantily clad woman on his work computer and a nearby co-worker was offended by it, he would have grounds for a lawsuit. The most important parts of sexual harassment training include communication and education. I've found in my experience that most sexual harassment violations are simple misunderstandings that result from differences in sub-cultures. Once a person is made aware that he is sexually harassing a co-worker, further infractions can be grounds for termination.
1/22/11
 
toothid says:
If the PGA "stopped answering the phone" for rules geek callers, I'm afraid these videos would appear on U-tube. They would probably label the "offender" as a rules cheat...especially if indeed there was an infraction.
Maybe the PGA needs a "grace period". They will field calls and investigate claims for 2 to 3 hours after the days last ball is holed.
If there is a question, the player can be contacted and showed the "evidence". If a penalty stroke(s) need to be assessed it can be done and the signed score card can be amended. After the "grace period" the players score stands.
Of course, there would be an issue on the final day of the tournament. Maybe any call fielded up until the last ball is holed will be looked at. Even if it is on the 72 hole involving the final group.... a PGA official could review the tapes within minutes. Of course the PGA would need to provide a NON -toll free number for "eagle eyed" viewers. "Oh what a terrible web we weave....etc"
1/22/11
 
svj says:
toothid, well put
1/22/11
 
legitimatebeef says:
Call this the beginning of the end. Because if you zoom closely enough you will see a lot of miniscule movement. Few balls are truly at rest at any given moment. If a player replaces his ball one micron closer to the hole, well isn't that still a violation of the letter of the law? It is!

I feel its a slippery slope and will only get worse from here. They must at least make some provisions for the player. He should be able to revise his scorecard to accept the penalty. Someone needs to exercise some judgment and stop following rules like a robot. These DQs are draconian and one-sided.
1/22/11
 
wanlotfi says:
what a joke..the ball just move and revert back to its original place and didn't role forward...
1/23/11
 
Bryan K says:
I tried to call the NFL about the one second that should have been left on the clock at the end of a 49ers game this year. They hung up on me.
1/23/11
 
svj says:
lol bryan, it wouldnt helped the 49ers season out much anyway..
1/23/11
 
Bryan K says:
svj: Actually, it would have. The game in question was week 16 agains the Rams when the Niners were driving downfield to take the lead. An extra second there could have gotten the Niners into the playoffs.
1/23/11
 
Bryan K says:
Now that I've actually watched the video, I have to say that it was a fairly obvious (albeit stupid) rules infraction. I could on the first shot at full speed that he bumped the ball while taking his marker away. However, I still believe that it should be the job of the course officials on the course to make a judgement call like that. Does it say anywhere in the rulebook that rules infractions may be put under review by anonymous people calling in to report them?
1/23/11
 
svj says:
they would beat the saints in the wild card game??? you are right on everything else, i just saying the west was bad, in not the cool way
1/24/11
 
Bryan K says:
lol...well....the Seahawks beat the Saints in the Wild Card game....and the Niners embarassed the Seahawks about three weeks before that.

The West only looked bad because they played the NFC South, arguably the best division in football.
1/24/11
 
tartantoml says:
If he had placed the ball 3 dimples closer to the cup (and further in front of his mark)he never would have touched the ball as he removed his marker. Therefore; by trying to place the ball too close to the mark he commited this heinous crime... Go Paddy!
1/24/11
 
wrhall02 says:
Seems like it is time to have official score keepers. Post real time scores with any penalties assessed on the spot. Paddy's DQ was a harsh ruling. Having fans call in infractions after the fact is a very slippery slope. Bias & favoritism would be factors if fans are in charge of rulings. I know the Vegas bookies would like to have a say who wins and who is DQ'd.

Has anyone ever seen the reverse? Where a player penalizes himself to avoid any potential DQ and a fan calls to validate it was NOT a penalty? Under today's rules, wouldn't it still be a DQ for signing an incorrect card?
1/24/11
 
mantajim says:
It's like getting the DEATH PENALTY for a parking ticket.
My solution, NEVER let any TV viewer call in any violation. It's not allowed in any other sport I can think of. If golf is truly a gentleman's game then calling rules violations is up to the player, his competition and the rules official.
1/24/11
 
jev says:
"Has anyone ever seen the reverse? Where a player penalizes himself to avoid any potential DQ and a fan calls to validate it was NOT a penalty? Under today's rules, wouldn't it still be a DQ for signing an incorrect card?"

No, signing a score card with a score that is too high is no reason for DQ. The silly thing is that if you switch two holes (thus one score too low, the other too high), you'll get DQ'd for that one hole that is too low.

Anyway, this sure is stupidity in optima forma. Nitpicking and called in by a TV couch potato. Plain silly, that is what it is.
1/25/11
 
jev says:
I just read the R&A is actually considering to change this rule (DQ for incorrect scoringcard, that is). Check out af.reuters.com/article/idAFJOE70O03G20110125
1/25/11
 
windowsurfer says:
It's too weird. TV, the immoral medium that addicts us, shouts its banal pitches at us endlessly -- "It's like getting punched in the mouth with flavour!" -- seduces us with soft porn (well, that part is OK) and otherwise attempts to rule us (Drink more beer! Eat more pizza! Watch Survivor! Scarf down some Viagra, ya limpd*ck!) has now taken over the one pure thing in life. Sports.
1/26/11
 
teachingpro says:
hey windsurfer, when did pro sports become pure? LOL
6/8/11
 
teachingpro says:
first off.. are all viewers couch potatos or just the ones that call in? it's called protecting the field people. i personally i'm glad the public is invited to call in. i'm not gonna do it, but why not allow it? we're watching and we have the same rule book. are we to just assume that each player out there is honest? ain't no telling how many MORE times arnold palmer cheated and got away with it. ken venturi maintains he cheated to win the '58 masters and i maintain that if it wasn't televised dustin johnson would've knowingly cheated to win last years PGA championship.
6/8/11
 
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