Sabbatini Turns To Greenkeeping Following Bay Hill Withdrawal

The Olympic silver medallist was forced to withdraw from the Arnold Palmer Invitational with a leg injury

Sabbatini rakes a bunker
(Image credit: Twitter: @PGATOUR)

Despite withdrawing during the third round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Rory Sabbatini carried on walking with his playing partner, Anirban Lahiri and, at one point, was even recorded raking a bunker.

Sabbatini, who produced a first round 77, seemed to be missing the cut by some margin. However, following a second round 69, the 45-year-old found himself in the weekend's action.

His third round didn't go to plan though as, following three bogies on his front nine, Sabbatini would make a double-bogey at the 10th, before a bogey at the 11th. After the run of bad holes, he would make a further double-bogey at the par-4 13th, before withdrawing with a leg injury.

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Despite withdrawing, Sabbatini continued to accompany his playing partner, Lahiri, and even raked one of Bay Hill's bunkers before hobbling away. 

Usually, you wouldn't see a player rake a bunker after a shot, but for Sabbatini, it seems to be a regular occurrence of late, with the 45-year-old also seen raking a bunker at last week's Honda Classic.

The actions of Sabbatini did cause some eyebrows to be raised in the commentary booth, with PGA Tour Live commentators saying: "Rory Sabbatini withdrew on the 13th hole. He is playing with Anirban Lahiri, but he's continued to walk with him - not only walk with him, but he is raking one of the bunkers! It's really unusual don't you think?! I've never seen that in all the years I have played out here. I've never seen a player withdraw and hang out."

Matt Cradock
Staff Writer

Matt joined Golf Monthly in February 2021 covering weekend news, before also transitioning to equipment and testing. After freelancing for Golf Monthly and The PGA for 18 months, he was offered a full-time position at the company in October 2022 and continues to cover weekend news and social media, as well as help look after Golf Monthly’s many buyers’ guides and equipment reviews.

Taking up the game when he was just seven years of age, Matt made it into his county squad just a year later and continues to play the game at a high standard, with a handicap of around 2-4. To date, his best round came in 2016, where he shot a six-under-par 66 having been seven-under through nine holes. He currently plays at Witney Lakes in Oxfordshire and his favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.

Matt’s current What’s In The Bag?

Driver: Honma TW747, 8.75°

Fairway Wood: TaylorMade Rocketballz Stage 2, 15°, 19°

Hybrid: Adams Super Hybrid, 22°

Irons: Mizuno MP54, 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Tour Satin, 50°, 56°, 60°

Putter: Cleveland TFI 2135 Satin Cero

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x