|Taken from ESPN video|
"I felt guilty. I felt guilty that my drop on 6 took so long. I felt like if I would have been in his position I would have been uncomfortable waiting so long to hit my birdie putt. So I just thought I have to do something. I have to do something to make sure that I feel good with myself."If you would like to see the shortened video of this episode it is available at this ESPN link, following the advertisement.
The wording of Rule 2-4, which deals with concession of match, hole or next stroke, confirms that there was no concession between Garcia and Fowler;
A player may concede a match at any time prior to the start or conclusion of that match.The agreement to halve a hole on which at least one player had made a stroke is ratified by Decision 2-1/1.5;
A player may concede a hole at any time prior to the start or conclusion of that hole.
A player may concede his opponent’s next stroke at any time, provided the opponent’s ball is at rest. The opponent is considered to have holed out with his next stroke, and the ball may be removed by either side.
A concession may not be declined or withdrawn.
Q. In a match, a player and his opponent play their second shots on a par 5 hole. Unexpectedly, neither ball can be found. Rather than proceeding under Rule 27-1, both players agree to a half. Is this permitted?I applaud the sporting gesture made by Sergio Garcia, which could have been the catalyst that caused him to lose his match with Rickie Fowler by one hole. However, I caution players in match play to ensure that they know exactly what they are doing before making some types of generous gestures concerning the Rules to their opponents. For example, if you inform your opponent that you saw them touch their ball in play without marking it, but you are not going to call the penalty, because it was obvious that they gained no advantage, you are guilty of agreeing to waive a Rule of Golf and should be disqualified. Whereas, if you observe the infraction, but say nothing, there can be no penalty. Choosing to ignore a breach of Rule by an opponent is one of many differences between match play Rules and stroke play Rules. I have written a comprehensive eDocument on this subject, which all golfers that expect to play in match play competitions could benefit by reading before taking on their opponents. Click here for details.
A. Yes. An agreement to halve a hole being played is permissible.
However, if the players agree to consider a hole halved without either player making a stroke, they should be disqualified under Rule 1-3 for agreeing to exclude the operation of Rule 2-1 by failing to play the stipulated round, provided the players knew that this was a breach of the Rules. (Revised)
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