Fact or fiction: Michelle Wie got a raw deal

mulligan, 16 October 2005, Comments Off on Fact or fiction: Michelle Wie got a raw deal
Categories: Uncategorized

Fact or fiction: Michelle Wie got a raw deal in being DQ’d.

1. Point 1: the DQ was based on a simulation or recreation of events from yesterday, not on actual events or the video of the 3rd round.

As discussed in the posts below, Michelle Wie was DQ’d after she was forced by LPGA rules officials today to recreate a ball drop from yesterday on the 7th hole. The LPGA admitted that NBC tapes were inconclusive if the drop was closer to the hole, but the rules officials must have thought that a “recreation” of events from yesterday based on Michelle’s and her caddie’s memories could precisely determine (i) where they found the ball in the bush and (ii) where Michelle dropped her ball. UPDATE: Also, I wonder if the LPGA Rules Official measured off the distance from Saturday’s pin placement, instead of Sunday’s — the pin placement establishes the apex for the triangle, so it’s possible the ball position could be closer to the hole on Sunday, but further away on Saturday. Just draw a little diagram with 2 points in the rough and then move the pin placement to the left and then the right. This recreation, fraught with guesswork and possible inaccuracies, raises question about the entire process in the first place.

2. Point 2: LPGA did not rely on Michelle’s word or integrity, as the PGA did on Tiger’s integrity.

The LPGA rules official apparently had to rely on a string measure tape in order to determine the putative drop from yesterday, as recreated today, was 12-15 inches closer to the hole. When is a string tape ever used to measure off any golfer’s drop??? If the video tape of the actual 3d round was inconclusive, shouldn’t you rely on the golfer’s integrity to admit or not whether the ball was closer to the hole? Michelle said she thought she did what was right, and would do it again. In a similar situation at this year’s Masters, where the videotape was deemed inconclusive, the PGA rules officials allowed Tiger Woods to make the decision whether he had violated the putting rule against the straddle stance (see here).

3. Point 3: for the LPGA to issue the DQ more than 2 hours after the end of today’s round violates the spirit of USGA Rule 34-1.

It states: “In stroke play, a penalty must not be … imposed after the competition has closed. A competition is closed when the result has been officially announced.” I did see Michelle Wie’s name posted 4th on the scoreboard after the tournament was over — presumably, the DQ occurred after Annika had been declared the winner and handed the winner’s check and trophy.


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