Maybe this will be called the Lexi Thompson rule.
There was an outcry in the golf world in April that Thompson had been wronged. Thompson was leading in the final round of the ANA Inspiration when officials told her she had been assessed a 2-shot penalty because of a rules infraction a day earlier.
A TV viewer emailed that Thompson had replaced a ball on the green at the wrong spot and because she signed her card after the round as usual, that was another 2-shot penalty. Those 4 strokes proved costly. Thompson lost the tournament in a playoff.
Viewers won’t be able to make such calls starting in 2018. On Monday, the USGA and R&A announced that players won’t be penalized 2 shots for an incorrect scorecard if they were not aware of a rules violation when they signed their card.
“The committee (at each tournament) will take on the responsibility of monitoring in real time,” Thomas Pagel, the USGA senior director of Rules of Golf and Amateur Status, told Golf World. “Essentially everything you’re seeing at home we’ve already seen it. We’re going to apply the rules accordingly.”
According to the Associated Press, the USGA and R&A ruled that only video from the telecast of a tournament can be used as evidence of a violation. That means the ruling bodies won’t accept smart phone video or other video from fans.
“We see this today in social media and otherwise, and not just limited to golf, you see video that’s clipped and manipulated,” Pagel told Golf World. “And rather that put yourself in a position of having to trust that, we’re just saying we’re going to rely on those credible sources.”
Thompson tweeted this on Monday after news of the change was made public: