Scott Prunes Rose at Alfred Dunhill

By Sports NetworkJanuary 21, 2001, 5:00 pm
Adam Scott birdied the final hole on Sunday to capture the Alfred Dunhill Championship in Johannesburg, South Africa by one shot over Justin Rose. Scott posted a three-under 69 to finish the tournament at 21-under 267, a new tournament record.
 
Adam Scott comments on his exciting first win.
 
Both players came to the par-five closing hole knotted at 20-under. Neither Scott nor Rose could reach the green in two shots, as both found rough in front of the green. Rose, playing his second from a bunker, chipped on to the green and watched as his ball rolled eight feet past the cup. Scott landed his third shot four feet short of the cup.
 
Rose's birdie putt slid by left, opening the door for Scott to claim his first professional title. Scott confidently ran the putt home to set the new tournament record, which was previously 269 set by Nick Price and David Frost in 1997.
 

'I've led a few tournaments and haven't sealed it, so it was nice to do that this time,' said Scott, who was in constant contact with his new coach Butch Harmon all week. 'Butch told me before the round not to go out there and try and win the tournament, but just to play a round of golf. That helped me to focus on what I had to do.'
 
At the beginning of Sunday's final round, Scott held a one-shot edge over Rose and Dean Robertson. Scott started with birdies on two, three and five to extend the lead. Rose did not fair as well as Scott as he bogeyed the first hole.
 
Scott's lead was trimmed after he three-putted both the ninth and 10th greens, giving him back-to-back bogeys. Rose had erased his early miscue with birdies at five and nine.
 
The 13th proved to be a critical hole. Scott's approach shot at the par-four hit the flag and bounced back off the front of the green. He could not get up and down and had to settle for bogey. Rose drained a 20-foot birdie to suddenly find himself at the top of the leaderboard.

Scott rebounded from the bogey at 13 when he holed a tricky birdie putt at 14, tying the two for the lead. Both players were able to birdie the 523-yard 16th, setting up the duel at 18.
This is Scott's first career victory since turning professional in June of last year. He won in only his ninth start on the European Tour.
 
Rose finished alone in second after a three-under 69, but had to wait for official confirmation. A rules official spotted what he thought was rules infraction by Rose at 18. The official seemed to think that Rose tested the condition of the hazard, a rules infraction.

The official did not penalize Rose after he was convinced that the movement was nothing more than a nervous twitch.

'I'm proud of the way I performed,' stated Rose, who has struggled on tour since turning professional after finishing fourth at the 1998 British Open. 'I hung in there and felt comfortable down the stretch. I feel more confident now.'
 
Robertson posted a two-under 70 on Sunday, tying him for third at 19-under with Nick Faldo. The six-time major winner carded a four-under 68 on Sunday.

Defending champion Anthony Wall came in fifth at minus-18.
Malcolm MacKenzie took sixth at 17-under 271, while Brian Davis and Retief Goosen shared seventh, one-shot behind MacKenzie.
 
Click here for Full-Field scores from the Alfred Dunhill Championship!

Lexi 'applaud's USGA, R&A for rules change

By Randall MellDecember 11, 2017, 5:15 pm

Lexi Thompson’s pain may prove to be the rest of golf’s gain.

David Rickman, the R&A’s executive director of governance, acknowledged on Golf Channel’s "Morning Drive" Monday that the new protocols that will eliminate the use of TV viewer call-ins and emails to apply penalties was hastened by the controversy following Thompson’s four-shot penalty at the ANA Inspiration in early April. The new protocols also set up rules officials to monitor TV broadcasts beginning next year.

“Clearly, that case has been something of a focus point for us,” Rickman said.

Thompson reacted to the new protocols in an Instagram post.

“I applaud the USGA and the R&A for their willingness to revise the Rules of Golf to address certain unfortunate situations that have arisen several times in the game of golf,” Thompson wrote. “In my case, I am thankful no one else will have to deal with an outcome such as mine in the future.”

Thompson was penalized two shots for improperly returning her ball to its mark on a green during Saturday’s round after a viewer emailed LPGA officials during Sunday’s broadcast. She was penalized two more shots for signing an incorrect scorecard for her Saturday round. Thompson ultimately lost in a playoff to So Yeon Ryu.

The new protocols will also eliminate the additional two-shot penalty a player receives for failing to include a penalty when a player was unaware of the penalty.

Shortly after the ANA Inspiration, the USGA and R&A led the formation of a video review working group, which included the PGA Tour, LPGA, European Tour, Ladies European Tour and PGA of America.

Also, just three weeks after Thompson was hit with the four-shot penalty, the USGA and R&A released a new Rules of Golf decision decision (34-3/10) limiting video evidence in two ways:

1. If an infraction can’t be seen with the naked eye, there’s no penalty, even if video shows otherwise.

2. If a tournament committee determines that a player does “all that can be reasonably expected to make an accurate estimation or measurement” in determining a line or position to play from or to spot a ball, then there will be no penalty even if video replay later shows that to be wrong.

While the USGA and R&A said the new decision wasn’t based on Thompson’s ANA incident, LPGA players immediately began calling it the “Lexi Rule.”

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PGA Tour, LPGA react to video review rules changes

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 1:32 pm

The USGA and R&A announced on Monday updates to the Rules of Golf, including no longer accepting call-ins relating to violations. The PGA Tour and LPGA, which were both part of a working group of entities who voted on the changes, issued the following statements:

PGA Tour:

The PGA Tour has worked closely with the USGA and R&A on this issue in recent years, and today's announcement is another positive step to ensure the Rules of Golf align with how the game is presented and viewed globally. The PGA Tour will adopt the new Local Rule beginning January 1, 2018 and evolve our protocols for reviewing video evidence as outlined.

LPGA:

We are encouraged by the willingness of the governing bodies to fully vet the issues and implement real change at a pace much quicker than the sport has seen previously. These new adaptations, coupled with changes announced earlier this year, are true and meaningful advances for the game. The LPGA plans to adopt fully the protocols and new Local Rule as outlined.

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Sharma closes on Monday, wins Joburg Open

By Associated PressDecember 11, 2017, 12:43 pm

JOHANNESBURG – Shubhankar Sharma won his first European Tour title by a shooting 3-under 69 Monday in the final round of the weather-delayed Joburg Open.

The 21-year-old Indian resumed his round on the eighth green after play was halted early Sunday afternoon because of storms. He parred that hole, birdied No. 9 and made par on every hole on the back nine.


Full-field scores from the Joburg Open


Sharma finished at 23-under 264, three strokes ahead of the pack, and qualified for next year's British Open, too.

''I actually wasn't going to come here about a week ago ... so I'm really happy that I came,'' said Sharma, who shot 61 in the second round. ''I don't think I'm ever going forget my first time in South Africa.''

Erik van Rooyen (66) was second, three strokes ahead of Shaun Norris (65) and Tapio Pulkkanen (68).

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 12:30 pm