The MOST BIZARRE golf ruling happened on the European Tour today

"The most incredible situation I've seen in my entire career," says European Tour tournament director...

Andy Roberts's picture
Fri, 22 Jan 2021
The MOST BIZARRE golf ruling happened on the European Tour today

European Tour tournament director Miguel Vidaor claims he experienced the "most incredible situation" of his career as tournament director during round two of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

The incident involved the end result of Jorge Campillo's drive down the 1st hole, which came to rest against a divot in the fairway. Vidaor explains exactly what happened in the European Tour's video post below: 



"It's the most incredible situation I've seen in my career," said Vidaor of the ruling he was called to on the first fairway earlier today at Abu Dhabi Golf Club. 

"When I got there, Jorge Campillo was standing on the fairway. I got close to him and I said 'Jorge, what's the problem?' because I couldn't see any balls lying around. He then said 'that's my problem!'

"The problem was that his ball had ended up wrapped in a divot from another competitor who had played previously. 

"My first instinct was that this looked so artificial, and that someone must have done this on purpose. Obviously that was not the case as there was no evidence of that, so I spoke to the scorer on the hole and he said he saw what had happened live. 

"The divot was left in an awkward position, and the ball actually went at the divot in speed and the divot kind of wrapped the ball and ended up on top of it. 



"The ruling is very simple. Actually, Jorge had the divot on his line of play, so there was no way he could make contact with that ball. He had to hit probably three or four inches behind the ball. 

"The divot is a loose impediment, you can move it anywhere on the golf course, but if by moving the divot and you move the ball you get a penalty, and you have to replace the ball.

"Jorge decided because it was so bad - the amount of divot he had between him and the club - he thought well this is like a penalty stroke. He thought he would take the risk of moving the divot, and hopefully the ball won't move.

"So we went really close and he grabbed it from both ends very carefully. I have to say he would be a good surgeon. He started to pick up the divot, and I was watching very closely. I said 'Jorge it's okay, it's not moving', and eventually after 15 seconds he managed to move it and the ball remained at rest, so he was able to play his shot."

Campillo went on to make par on the hole but unfortunately it mattered little in the grand scheme of things as the Spaniard missed the cut on 3-over par.