Pro shoots 83: Includes six penalty strokes (!) and four lost balls!

We don’t see this too often. A professional golfer shooting 83?

But that was exactly what happened to Julien Brun in the third round (Saturday) of the recent Italian Open on the DP World Tour, which was played on Marco Simone Golf & Country Club, home of this year’s Ryder Cup.

And what a round it was! Let me mention a few “highlights”:

  • One ball out of bounds (= one penalty stroke).
  • One ball lost (= one penalty stroke).
  • Three missed putts from less than 5 feet (including a two-footer!).
  • Two balls in the water (penalty area) (= one penalty stroke times two).
  • • One penalty stroke times two for lifting a ball, when not allowed.
    • A short explanation: Thursday and Friday there had been a Local Rule in place, allowing players to “clean and place” their balls on the fairway… but unfortunately the rule was not in operation on Saturday… something Brun had not noticed! Therefore, under Rule 9.4b he was assessed a one-stroke penalty for lifting his ball – and since he did it twice in the first six holes, he incurred a total of two penalty strokes! There was no additional penalty for cleaning the ball (see Rule 14.1c).

Luckily, Brun took the bad news with a smile:

When asked how he (such a great player) could shoot 83, his answer seemed reminiscent of the great Arnold Palmer’s long-ago excuse:

  • Because I missed a four-foot putt on 18th hole for an 82…!