McDowell Boots Bag After New 2019 Rule Ruins Round

G-Mac's ball on the 18th hole was found 12 seconds after the three minute mark

McDowell Boots Bag After New 2019 Rule Ruins Round

G-Mac's ball on the 18th hole was found 12 seconds after the three minute mark

McDowell Boots Bag After New 2019 Rule Ruins Round

Graeme McDowell made a triple-bogey on the 18th hole in the first round of the Open Championship to drop to two over par.

However, had this been a year ago he may well have closed with a par and shot one under.

This isn't last year however, and unfortunately for Graeme McDowell he wasn't able to find his ball within the new three minute time frame.

Painfully for the Portrush man, his ball was found after three minutes and 12 seconds.

He showed his pain by kicking out at his golf bag, which may well have caused his foot some pain too.

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"To conduct myself as well as I did all day and play as well as I did all day, and then to finish like that was -- it hurts, you know, it hurts a lot. But it's golf. It's golf.

"I got to not let this spoil my week, because it could easily spoil my week. I feel like all the air has been let out of the sails plus some. The ship feels like it's sinking. It's not air out of the sails, it's everything."

"I thought it was a hell of a rule there until about 12 minutes ago," he said of the new three minute ball search rule.

"It's amazing, 5 minutes feels like a long time when you're looking for a ball. And 3 minutes feels like no time at all.

"We had 30 people over there looking for that thing. 12 seconds after the 3 minutes was up we found it. We found my ball.

"It was a lie where I could have gotten it in the fairway. It wasn't a great lie. Unfortunately it was 10 yards right of where I thought it was. For some reason, no one saw it and the marshals didn't get an eye on it."

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Elliott Heath
Senior Staff Writer

Elliott Heath is our Senior Staff Writer and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news, features, courses and travel sections as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. Elliott has interviewed some huge names in the golf world including Sergio Garcia, Thomas Bjorn, Bernd Wiesberger and Scotty Cameron as well as a number of professionals on the DP World and PGA Tours. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as four Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats anywhere between 2-6. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!


Elliott is currently playing:


Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Max

Hybrid: TaylorMade SIM Max

Irons: Mizuno MP5 4-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x