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Former NCAA Champion disqualified from LPGA Q-Series after incident allegedly involving her mother

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The LPGA Tour has had its fair share of drama in recent years when it comes to rules infractions, and on Saturday at the LPGA Q-Series at Pinehurst Resort, a truly curious incident occurred, which resulted in a disqualification.

Doris Chen, the 2014 NCAA individual champion at USC, and the 2010 U.S. Girls’ Junior champion, was the player in question. She was deemed to have breached rule 15-3b after she played a ball that had gone out of bounds and then was moved back in bounds by “an outside agency.” The incident occurred on the 17th hole during Friday’s seventh round at the No. 7 course. According to reports from Golf Channel and Golfweek, it was Chen’s mother, Yuh-Guey Lin, who moved the ball back in bounds.

Speaking with GolfDigest.com on Sunday morning, Chen stated that she was unaware that the ball had been out of bounds, believing that the ball had been kicked from a bad lie to a good lie. Thinking that she was allowed to play the ball as it lies, Chen claimed that after her round she was then informed that the ball had been out of bounds.

“My caddie and I didn’t see anything happen. We were looking for the ball. I didn’t see the ball move. It was just what the homeowner said, In my mind, I thought I was just supposed to play the ball as it lied. … I realize now I should have called for a rules official to investigate.”

When asked if she had spoken to her mother after the round and whether or not it had been her that moved the ball, Chen stated that if it was indeed her, then it was an accident, before taking responsibility for the incident.

“She (Chen’s mother) told me that she didn’t and she doesn’t know. And if she did, it may be by accident and she wasn’t aware. What I would like to say is that it was a misunderstanding. It was a stressful week and not my intention for any of it to happen. I was not directly involved in any way, but I take the responsibility and accept the ruling. I was not trying to cheat and I am not a cheater.”

Regarding the decision to disqualify Chen, the LPGA released a statement clarifying just what Chen had done wrong, stating:  “Ms Chen and her caddie were made aware that the ball had been moved. Doris elected to play the ball, which was a wrong ball by definition, from its altered lie. Ms. Chen did not correct her error before teeing off on the next hole, thus resulting in the DQ penalty.”

At the time of her disqualification, Chen was placed T74 at 14-over par and six strokes out of 45th place. The top 45 finishers and ties at the end of the eight-round event earned LPGA Tour cards for 2019.

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Gianni is the Assistant Editor at GolfWRX. He can be contacted at gianni@golfwrx.com. Follow him on Twitter @giannimosquito

16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. ck

    Nov 8, 2018 at 4:31 am

    NO child should hang his/her mom out to dry…..

    • John Hall

      Nov 8, 2018 at 10:29 am

      So cheating’s OK if it involves a member of your own family?

  2. Poulterguist

    Nov 6, 2018 at 7:58 pm

    Think she should play her future rounds with a rules official present in the group.

  3. Kevin

    Nov 6, 2018 at 1:56 pm

    I mean, how did her mum know it was her daughter’s tee shot?

  4. Steve O

    Nov 6, 2018 at 10:24 am

    I feel for Chen. She must have been mortified at what her mother did, which put her in a very difficult position. Do you protect your mother or do you call an official who would obviously discover her mother kicked the ball. Ultimately she did the wrong thing which REALLY put the focus on her mother and herself.

    • Richard Tucker

      Nov 6, 2018 at 7:26 pm

      Another case of win and succeed at all costs. Both should be banned for life I do not accept the player did not know about it she apparently told her caddie to keep quiet about it.

  5. Joe

    Nov 6, 2018 at 3:08 am

    Definitely a poor demonstration of sportsmanship and ethics. Sometimes these “tiger moms” crossed that fine line to win at all cost. What they fail to understand is that someone, somewhere is always watching. It’s a matter of time that you get caught. It might be presumptuous for me to say this, but I wonder how many times that actually happened already. And for a course home resident to have witness this, it must have been a very blatent behavior. After all, it was an OB ball, and in my opinion, they are never that easy to find. Sorry mom, you got caught and shame on you.

  6. John Hall

    Nov 6, 2018 at 12:20 am

    Tough break she got caught?? Her mother’s a cheat and should be banned from future tournaments. She is trying to exonerate her mother’s actions. “She (Chen’s mother) told me that she didn’t and she doesn’t know. And if she did, it may be by accident and she wasn’t aware.” – How can you kick a golf ball back into play by accident? I’d have a lot more respect for Ms Chen if she’d said ‘Mom did the wrong thing”

  7. JDeezy

    Nov 5, 2018 at 7:13 pm

    Her caddie has come out and said she did the wrong thing. She sounds like a cheat.

  8. B Ferguson

    Nov 5, 2018 at 12:19 pm

    Stage moms . . .

  9. John

    Nov 5, 2018 at 12:13 pm

    I don’t believe there was an intent to cheat, per we, but once told that her ball ha been moved by an outside agency, she needed to get an official to clarify her options. Obviously, what she considered proper was not. Tough break in any event.

  10. John Krug

    Nov 5, 2018 at 11:49 am

    Interview her mother.

  11. Jamie

    Nov 5, 2018 at 10:25 am

    WTF Mom? Seriously. Who does that? Oh, a Win at all cost New York locust.

  12. dixiedoc

    Nov 5, 2018 at 8:49 am

    Tiger’s ball used to do the same thing on occasion.

    • get a life

      Nov 5, 2018 at 3:28 pm

      amazeball you could pull tiger out of this. there’s nothing you tiger haters can’t do right?

  13. TRUMP 2020

    Nov 4, 2018 at 10:03 pm

    I doubt Doris knew. But her mom sure did.

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PGA Tour to provide financial assistance to players and caddies during Coronavirus pandemic

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The PGA Tour has announced plans to compensate both players and caddies after several Tour events were cancelled due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.

In a memo sent to players on Friday, it was explained that due to IRS regulations, the Tour is not allowed distribute un-earned financial benefits to members, but that the organization has developed some programs to help its players during the ongoing pandemic. Players and caddies will receive financial assistance from the PGA Tour with one of the primary programs to help players based on their current FedEx Cup standing.

Players can receive up to $100,000 in bonus earnings during this period which will subsequently be removed from their season-ending bonus after play has been restarted.

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Included in the memo were caddies, who are entitled to a partial mid-season distribution of an endorsement program and who can also request financial support from the Caddie Benevolent Fund.

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Report: 2020 U.S. Open to be rescheduled due to Coronavirus pandemic

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Per the report, the plan is for the tournament to be played “later in the summer”, with the location of the event remaining at Winged Foot Golf Club.

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