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USGA taking steps to prevent rules controversy

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SAN MARTIN, Calif. – USGA officials say they’re prepared to respond better if Rule 18-2 becomes an issue should a player be suspected of causing her ball to move at this week’s U.S. Women’s Open.

Almost three weeks after Dustin Johnson’s issue at Oakmont caused a furor at the U.S. Open, there’s a game plan should a similar occurrence arise at CordeValle this week.

John Bodenhamer, the USGA senior managing director of championships and governance, was asked what specific steps the organization was taking to prevent a similar controversy.

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“It will be different this week in two ways,” Bodenhamer said. “We will expedite our decision making throughout the process, rulemaking, rule decision process. And we will communicate with players in a decisive manner. We recognize that there was some uncertainty at Oakmont on that last day, and we are committed to not have that happen again.

“Since Oakmont, we've committed to really look at everything across the board, with all of our processes. Take this opportunity to look at everything. And that's going to take some time. But we've already started that process. It's just been 17 days, and we think that we've already taken proactive steps to make it different and better this week.”