Lexi Thompson was ahead of her competition at the first major of the year, the LPGA’s ANA Inspiration. The violation was committed in the first round, when Thompson had an incorrect marking of the ball and signing an incorrect card. Watch the violation here:
— Golf Channel (@GolfChannel) April 3, 2017
The LPGA was only aware of the violation due to a viewer calling in and pointing it out. Therefore, the punishment was given the day after the violation, which many believed was unfair to Thompson. The LPGA put out an official statement regarding Lexi Thompson:
Our statement regarding Lexi Thompson penalty. pic.twitter.com/bQrlIFrebQ
— LPGA (@LPGA) April 3, 2017
According to the Associated Press, Thompson asked Sue Witters, an LPGA official, ‘is this a joke?’ When Witters informed Thompson that it was true, Thompson just said ‘This is ridiculous.’ Thompson went on to birdie 3 of the next 6 holes, forcing herself into the playoff. Many questions have been raised after this odd way of finding the violation. Would this have happened if the violation was noticed in the final round? Should viewers be able to impact a major tournament like this? Tiger Woods put it perfectly, tweeting:
Viewers at home should not be officials wearing stripes. Let’s go @Lexi, win this thing anyway.
— Tiger Woods (@TigerWoods) April 3, 2017