ARDMORE, Pa. – Bounced out of the U.S. Open lead by the most unfortunate of bad bounces, Lee Westwood did little to contain his dislike for Merion’s famed wicker baskets following completion of his delayed first round on Friday.
Westwood was tied for the lead at 3 under when he bounced his third shot into the 12th hole off the wicker basket atop the pin and some 30 yards back into the fairway. The Englishman made a double-bogey 6 on the hole but finished with an even-par 70 and was tied for sixth place.
As for those baskets, Westwood still seemed to be stewing over the bad bounce early Friday.
“Well I did hit it,” Westwood said. “But (R&A chief executive) Peter Dawson (who was the rules official walking with Westwood’s group) has reassured me that for the Open Championship we'll be going back to flags like a normal tournament.”
According to officials, had Westwood’s ball imbedded into the wicker basket on No. 12 he would have been allowed to place the ball on the lip of the cup with no penalty.