Joaquin Niemann’s excellence from the first two days at LIV Golf Mayakoba was diminished as he was assessed a penalty before the start of the final round…
LIV Golf revealed in a statement that Niemann played from the wrong place after incorrectly taking relief from a cart path on hole 13 at El Camaleon Golf Course.
Niemann “failed to drop within his one-club length relief area” on the par 5 which led to a two-shot penalty.
LIV’s rules committee became aware of the issue on Saturday evening and administered the penalty on Sunday. His score on the hole was changed from a five to a seven.
Having shot a staggering 59 in round one and a moderate 1-under-par 70 in round two which was later turned into 1-over, the Chilean’s score was reduced from 13-under-par to 11 at the start of round three.
He held a two-shot advantage over Jon Rahm and Dean Burmester with 18 holes left in the first event of the LIV Golf season in 2024.
Joaquin Niemann: LIV Golf administers costly penalty, but under what rule?
Niemann was penalised under Rule 14.7a which concerns the place where a ball must be played.
Rule 14.7a says after starting a hole, a player must make each stroke from where their ball comes to rest, except when the rules require or allow a player to play from another place.
A player can’t play from the wrong place of course, so this results in the general penalty of two shots.
Rule 3.3b (3) concerns the wrong score for a hole. If a player returns a scorecard with a wrong score for any hole, they can be disqualified if the returned score is lower than the actual one.
The exception is failure to include an unknown penalty. If one or more of the player’s scores are lower than the actual scores because they didn’t include a penalty stroke that they didn’t know about, the player isn’t disqualified.
If the mistake is found before the end of the event, the committee revises the score of that hole or holes by adding the penalty strokes that should’ve been included.
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