Golf is struggling and an incident over the weekend explains why. Golf, and its fans, are insufferable.
Lexi Thompson had a three shot lead in the first major tournament of the year for the LPGA, but then was given a four-stroke penalty because she had placed a ball 1 inch from where it was supposed to be on a 1-foot putt. One. Inch. And she didn’t move the ball any closer to the hole.
Now the insufferable part. It wouldn’t have happened if some viewer watching from the couch hadn’t noticed the mistake and sent an email on Saturday, so that the penalty could be assessed while she played the 13th hole on Sunday.
Viewers at home should not be officials wearing stripes. Let's go @Lexi, win this thing anyway.
— Tiger Woods (@TigerWoods) April 3, 2017
No other sport lets this happen.
Our statement regarding Lexi Thompson penalty. pic.twitter.com/bQrlIFrebQ
— LPGA (@LPGA) April 3, 2017
“Is this a joke?” Thompson asked a golf official who let a TV watcher do the work of golf officials.
Thompson lost the tournament and $154,509.
Well it was an emotional day here for me, first off I do want to say what I had done was 100% not intentional at all I didn't realize I had done that. I want to say thank you to all the sponsors, volunteers and Mission Hills for making this week possible at the @anainspiration ! Also to the fans out there, words can't describe what you being there for me, meant to me. You helped me push thru those last holes so thank you for always believing in me. A big thanks to my caddy as well for always staying positive and being there for me when it got tough. I played some great golf so definitely a lot of positives to take from the week. Time for a very needed 3 weeks off now. Thank you everybody ❤
It’s the second time in a year this sort of thing has happened in a major. Last year, Anna Nordqvist was assessed a two-stroke penalty for hitting a tiny amount sand in her backswing. A viewer posted the evidence on Twitter and that was enough for the golf gods.