Bryson DeChambo’s ball search knocked him out of the Masters hunt

Augusta, Ga. – It was almost a given Bryson DeCambo will do something memorable In this year’s Masters tournament. It did not presume to be such a sharp tee shot across the Georgia skies that it would have come out of clear sight.

Just as amazing: That swing, and the resulting penalty for a lost ball, could cause Dechambo, who is the favorite of the play, to miss the cut and be sent home from the 2020 Masters on Saturday. The missing tee shot on Friday triggered a three-hole meltdown for Dichumbo as he batted his ball around the course and slid down the leaderboard.

It has been the kind of master for which so far DeChambeau, who arrived at Augusta National Golf Club Wake up in a wave of hype for his long drive. But in his first two rounds, keeping his shots straight has been a big issue.

Consider Friday evening between a reporter and John Rahm, one of DeKambo’s game partners in the last two days:

Reporter: “Were you involved in the search for Bryson’s ball?”

Rahm: “Which one?”

More on that later. The away drama for DeChambeau began on the third hole.

At the time, DeChambeau, who equalized one over for the tournament on Friday with six holes left to play in the second round, was enjoying some revival of the tournament. After a bang-up start early Thursday, he raced to two under-par, leaving him hiding behind the quartet and now leading the event: Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Abraham Aniser and Cameron Smith, who nine Were less than a year old. Second Round.

350 yards, the par-4 third hole should have been easy prey. On Friday, DeChambeau hit a shot, which landed under his green from about 20 yards and just off the fairway in some high ruff. The ball disappeared into the grass. In several, slow-motion TV replays, the white orb appeared to descend about 330 yards from the tee and disappeared as it approached the grass.

In golf, it is known as a plug ball and it is often only visible when a person stands directly above it and stares directly down, but does not 2020 Masters is being held without audienceThere were no fans around the hole to guide Dechambu to the proper location.

When DeChambeau reached the area where his tee shot landed, it was clear that he would need reinforcements if he was ever going to find the ball. Augusta National is usually an outlier as a championship golf course because it lacks high grass outside the fair. But it is during its traditional April setting.

Delayed in November due to the coronavirus pandemic, the tournament is being played on the field with grass with a few spots that are several inches high and being drenched by small puddles from the rain that occurred a day earlier on Friday.

DeChambeau stuck the grass in the area around where it seemed to have landed. Rahm and his fellow sports partner, Luo Outhuizen, joined him, as did his cadets and tournament officials. At one time, a group of 14 people were pressurizing the grass in search of DeChambeau’s Bridgestone golf ball.

Based on television replays, it appeared that they were watching about 10 yards away where they should have been searched. A rule official started timing the episode because after three minutes any ball that cannot be found is considered a defeat, which carries a penalty of one stroke and allows the player to go back and shoot his shot at that location. Has to play again from where he killed. This counts as the player’s third stroke on the hole, which is enough to make any golfer feel ill.

An increasingly upset DeChambeau asked the rules officially to Ken Tackett as the clock ticked down: “So you’re saying if we can’t find it – it’s a lost ball?”

Yes really DeChambeau began to wonder whether or not the golf rule book referred to as “accidental water” if wet conditions were formed and whether it could save him from a one-stroke penalty and return to the tee is. Tackett shook his head: no.

The time was up, and the ball was officially lost. DeChambeau climbed into a golf cart and hit another ball from the third tee. It struck almost the same spot as the previous ball, except that it bounced and appeared. But when Dechambu returned to the scene, it was clear that the whole incident shook him.

He sent a small chip, his fourth shot over the hole, flying into the green from 20 yards. From there, his pitch fell to another 15 feet hole. After two books, Dechambu had a dilemma, a double bogey.

“I know it affected him a little bit, because he didn’t play his best golf after that,” Rahm said.

Rahm was sympathetic, and diplomatic.

Looking at Frazzled, DeChambeau slammed his drive to the fourth hole, then hit the wrong way ironically from the rough – “Oh, I popped it up,” he screamed after the swing.

He began to play fairly fast and hardly shaped a few shots before hitting him, as if he had an Uber car waiting to remove him from the scene. It was a subliminal response that would be recognized by any everyday duffer – the kind of things golf players do when their brains are a mixture of exaggeration and embarrassment.

Bogies developed continuously on the fourth and fifth holes. Now DeChambeau, who refused to come to the clubhouse interview area late on Friday night, was four over par for his round.

Rahm, who was part of the search party that helped DeChambeau find a ball on Thursday, which he blasted into azea bushes behind the 13th green, understood what his playing partner was doing.

“It’s unfortunate that the rules of golf didn’t allow you to find out if it’s somewhere and playing – because it had to tee again,” Rahm said. “I mean, when you have Bryson as hard to hit it as he hits it and it’s not like hooking into a soft area with too much spin, we were all convinced it was very buried and It was going to be hard to find. “

To his credit, DeChambeau bounced back. He birdied three of the next nine holes after his defeat on the third, but missed a four-foot Eagle put on the eighth hole after a superb drive and accurate approach shot. He is not out of the tournament yet, although he will take a grand rally on his final six holes to conclude the second round on Saturday to find a way to claim.

“He’s a fighter and he’s showing it,” Rahm said.

Yet, in all, this was not what DeKambo wanted to make its mark on golf’s most meaningful event.

There was one final outrage to end DeChambeau’s day: Rahm said the missing golf ball was found in the high grass near the third green minute as it was abandoned.

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