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19th Hole

The golf gods showed Matt Harmon absolutely no love

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Matt Harmon

Matt Harmon stepped up to the most important putt of his career and the golf gods laughed in his face.

It wasn’t quite so cut-and-dried as “this putt is for a PGA Tour card,” but pretty close. Harmon needed a four-footer for birdie at the 17th hole (and a par at the 18th) to finish inside the top 25 for the Web.com Finals.

Instead, Harmon agonizingly missed the putt with a decelerating stroke that had him walking after it early, saying, “That’s the worst putt I’ve hit in a long time.”

He followed up with a bogey at the 18th to miss out on his chance to join the big tour by two strokes.

Even more savagely than coaxing Harmon into a high-handicapper’s putting stroke, as you can see in the video below, the golf gods weren’t about to give him the satisfaction of breaking his putter on the first or second try.

Harmon eventually succeeded with the less than satisfying “step on the head and separate the shaft” break, which has to be the least cathartic form of club break.

I mean, damn, didn’t the guy at least deserve something like this?

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8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. Mrisinge

    Oct 11, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    He needs to grow up if he wants to play with the big boys.

  2. Grizz

    Oct 5, 2017 at 2:50 pm

    Something got inbetween his ears.

  3. Chema

    Oct 5, 2017 at 6:24 am

    Joe Daley at Q School was way more heartbreaking than this when his hit the liner on the final hole. That’s the golf gods! This has nothing to do with the golf gods. Just nerves and a pulled birdie attempt on the second to last hole. He’s a better golfer then I’ll ever be though.

  4. JimO

    Oct 4, 2017 at 8:01 pm

    Had nothing to do with “golf gods” As more than one former player now sports analyst has said, “we don’t like to use the word, but it looks like he choked” There are lot’s of golfers with great swings and lots of talent, but it’s the between the ears and what’s in their gut that makes the difference. And I’m in no way calling Harmon a choker, or gutless. He may learn and come out and smoke the Web.com tour next year. All about how you handle adversity, he didn’t handle it well, wasn’t the putter’s fault.

  5. Vincent

    Oct 4, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    Golf is hard

  6. Busterfudd1

    Oct 4, 2017 at 2:24 pm

    There are no such thing as “golf gods”. There are however, Golf Godesses; cruel, unforgiving, merciless forever. Gods forgive – Godesses never!!!!!

  7. justin case

    Oct 4, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    the putt on 17 was for birdie… not par… at least according to the screen.

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19th Hole

GolfWRX members have plenty to say about Justin Thomas’ comments on ‘unacceptable’ fan behavior

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At last week’s Genesis Open, after two days of golf grouped with Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas had seen all the boorish fan behavior he could take, and he decided to say something about it.

And GolfWRX members had a strong response to Thomas’ reponse, as it were. First, here’s what JT had to say last week.

“Yeah, it was pretty wild this first couple days. It was all right for a little bit today, but there at the end it got a little out of hand…I guess it’s a part of it now, unfortunately. I wish it wasn’t. I wish people didn’t think it was so amusing to yell and all that stuff while we’re trying to hit shots and play.”

“I don’t know – I guess they just think it’s funny,” Thomas said. “It might be funny to them, and obviously people think of it differently and I could just be overreacting. But when people are now starting to time it wrong and get in people’s swings, is just completely unacceptable really. We’re out here playing for a lot of money, a lot of points, and a lot of things can happen. And you would just hate to have, hate to see in the future something happen down the line because of something like that.”

You can almost hear the “he’s absolutely right” and “spoiled pro athlete” contingents readying their arms!

Cool Percussion is in the second squadron, and he started a thread with this venomous post.

“Is Justin Thomas justified in his complaints? On one hand, I can see how large galleries can be a distraction to golfers. (I know if I had to play in front of one it would cost me more than “a half shot per round”)

“On the other hand: POOR BABY! Aww poor little Justin is playing in front of a big-boy gallery now. Boo Hoo. Waaaaahhhhh!!! It must be so hard for you to be paired with Tiger and have to deal with the kinds of galleries that he has had to deal with FOR VIRTUALLY HIS ENTIRE CAREER! Grow-up you spoiled, whiny brat.”

“Here’s an idea, Justin: continue to play like you did this week—keep yourself off the top page of the leaderboard—and then no one will want to come see you and you won’t have to deal with large crowds anymore.”

Now, it has to be said, there’s a difference between large crowds, the Tiger Woods crowd, and idiots who yell during a golfer’s backswing. Thomas seemed mostly upset about the latter. Cool Percussion seems to be conflating all three.

Alikane responds with

“I think he has a legitimate complaint. None of the players like distractions when they are hitting shots. Distractions can alter outcomes of tournaments.”

blink 3665 defends JT in this hot take

“I don’t have a problem with his complaint. He didn’t say that a large gallery was the source of his frustration. It was the yelling and pictures while swinging. His quote seems to have a friendly, but annoyed, demeanor. If anything I think he would be in the right to voice more frustration than he did.

“Yes, the large galleries are something that groupings with TW will have to deal with, but that doesn’t give them the right to affect the games of the players by distracting during a swing.

“So why should anyone have to put up with that? Why does his stance against “loud, annoying, drunk, inconsiderate dbs” mean he is a “spoiled whiney brat”? I think that makes him normal.”

Kjboisen doesn’t agree with the percussionist

“Dislike your perspective that JT needs to get used to those larger galleries. I don’t think that is the problem. it’s the drunken morons who yell on backswings and on important putts. If there is going to be noise, make it a constant noise. If there is supposed to be relative silence, and I hear someone yell some B.S on my backstroke for an important putt, it would bother me too.”

“I don’t think the crowds bother anyone unless someone on Tour lives under a damn rock and has never played with a group of friends who will do anything to keep a match alive… conditioned to the distracts. But the other BS is unnecessary and more precaution needs to be taken in my opinion. Active crowd patrol and searching for over-rowdy individuals to remove from the situation before it becomes a problem.”

Dciccoritti points out a likely accelerant

“Remove the booze in all sporting events. If you can’t enjoy a sporting event without getting drunk and stupid, you shouldn’t be there in the first place.”

Golfandfishing draws an interesting connection

“Every week there are posts on here calling out the stupidity of people yelling scrambled eggs bababooey get in the hole woohoo and 5 pages of posts then agree it is stupid. Justin Thomas says the same thing and he’s a spoiled brat?”

The thread is currently six pages long and more than 170 replies deep. In other words, the membership has plenty to say on the topic.

What do you think? Check out the rest of the replies and join the discussion.

 

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19th Hole

Another rules incident for Lexi Thompson

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For Lexi Thompson and the LPGA Tour, the day they hoped would never come has arrived. Lexi Thompson made a rules blunder and nearly signed for an incorrect scorecard for her second round of play at the Honda LPGA Thailand.

Details are scant, but based on a report from Keeley Levins at Golf Digest, it seems Thompson’s ball came to rest near an advertising sign at the 15th hole. Believing the sign was a moveable obstruction, Thompson moved the sign. And, well, you know where this is going. The sign was an immovable obstruction. It’s unclear who Thompson consulted before making her decision, but it doesn’t appear she sought out a rules official.

Unaware that she was in violation, Thompson was told of the two-stroke penalty while she was in the scorers’ tent. After the rules official’s intercession, Thompson signed for a second-round 68, rather than 66.

The LPGA issued this statement

“During the second round of the Honda LPGA Thailand, Lexi Thompson incurred a two-stroke penalty on hole 15 for breach of the Local Rule regarding temporary immovable obstructions as prescribed in Appendix 1. The Supplementary Rules of Play for the Honda LPGA Thailand state that advertising boards are temporary immovable obstructions.”

Now, opinions on what befell Thompson at the 2017 Ana Inspiration range from “she was a victim” to “her cavalier ballmarking finally caught up with her.” Regardless of where you sit in that continuum, you’d have to expect Lexi Thompson would be calling in a rules official in any potentially dubious situation, or at the very least, giving the local rules a close read.

Ultimately, you’d have to think the takesmiths will remain largely entrenched in their post-Ana rules fiasco positions on this one. What say you, GolfWRX members?

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19th Hole

Retired pro cricketer blasts Kevin Na for slow play. Is he right?

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A tweet and follow-up video from a retired English cricketer are making the rounds in the golf social mediaverse and snackable content realms. And while most agree that it’s not a good look for golf when Kevin Pietersen, who has more than three million Twitter followers, mocks Kevin Na for taking a small eternity over a putt and slow play is an issue on Tour, Pietersen may not exactly be hitting the mark.

Anyway, here’s the tweet and succeeding tutorial.

What do you think, GolfWRX members? Surely it’s hyperbole to call the putt a “tap-in,” no? But given the length of the putt, how excessive is the amount of time Na took?

And for the millionth time, expecting players like Kevin Na (who prefers a…deliberate pace) to play quickly because it’s courteous, isn’t going to happen. Pro golf is the man’s job, and he clearly believes he does it best when he does it slowly with great deliberation. Expecting Na, or any other player of a similar mindset, to change without outside influence (slow play penalties) is unrealistic.

In other words, Pietersen ought to include @PGATour in his tweet as well.

Update: Na posted this defense/explanation on Instagram. 

 

 

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