Frustrated Mickelson swats moving ball with putter at Open

Frustrated Mickelson swats moving ball with putter at Open

Frustrated Mickelson swats moving ball with putter at Open

After Mickelson blew a relatively short putt past the hole on the 13th green at Shinnecock Hills on Saturday, he raced around the other side of the cup to quickly smack another putt.

There was some question as to whether the USGA could disqualify Mickelson under Rule 1-2, which outlaws playing a moving ball to gain a "signifiant advantage". "The last time I saw something like that was John Daly at the '99 [U.S.] Open at Pinehurst". A round that began with fans singing "Happy Birthday" to Mickelson as he walked down the first fairway went off the rails in a very unusual way.

By hitting a moving ball, he breached rule 14-5, and was thus given a two-stroke penalty, taking a 10 on the hole. With the two-shot penalty, he was given a sextuple-bogey 10 on the hole and was 10 over for his round.

He said he knew the ball was going to roll off the green, which is why he chose to hit it while it was still moving. He took a 10 on the hole.

Afterwards, Mickelson - who is now on +17 after three rounds at Shinnecock Hills - says he has long wanted to give up on a hole by hitting a moving ball.

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You've never seen anything like this from Phil Mickelson.

And just in case you didn't understand, he added the following while speaking to reporters: "If somebody's offended by that, I apologize". After three more pars following the meltdown, he bogeyed 17, then parred 18.

Mickelson later said he did not mean the shot to be disrespectful, saying there was "no question" the ball was going to roll off the green, and he chose to take the penalty rather than the alternative.

The chuckles continued on the next hole, when Mickelson tried to pull off a gravity-assisted trick shot.

'At that time, I just didn't feel like going back and forth and hitting the same shot over. "That would have saved me a shot or two back then".

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