The two-time European Tour winner was penalised two strokes after his caddie was deemed to have lined him up over a putt
Haotong Li Penalty Leaves Tour Pros Fuming
The new Rules of Golf have been in force for a few weeks now and we witnessed the first high-profile penalty on Tour this weekend.
Perhaps one of the lesser publicised Rules, because it doesn't apply to club golfers, is that caddies are no longer allowed to line up their players.
Well, Haotong Li's caddie was deemed to have lined his player up over a putt on the 18th hole during the Dubai Desert Classic and it cost the defending champion two strokes and around €100,000.
It dropped him from T3rd down to T12th.
The two-time European Tour winner had a short birdie putt on the last hole (which he made) and his caddie was behind him appearing to be helping out with reading the putt.
However, by the time Li had taken his stance and address position over the putt, his caddie had moved away.
It is certainly unclear whether he was lining up his man or just simply taking a look at the line of the putt.
Watch the video below:
The penalty has angered many on social media, including Li's fellow Tour Pros Eddie Pepperell, Ross Fisher, Richie Ramsay, Pablo Larrazabal and more.
British Masters champion Eddie Pepperell tweeted: Hard to believe @haotong_li has been penalised for this. Frankly, I think it’s a shockingly bad decision and for the life of me I cannot see how Mike has lined Haotong up here."
It was Rule 10.2.B that ultimately cost Haotong Li, here is what it states -
A player may have his or herpointed out by:
- Having his or her or any other person stand on or close to the player’s to show where it is, but that person must move away before the is made.
Do you feel Haotong Li's penalty was harsh or do you see how his caddie could have been seen as lining him up?
Let us know your thoughts on our social media channels
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Elliott Heath is our News Editor 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. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as four Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, 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 2-5. 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: Titleist TSi2 HL
Irons: Mizuno MP-H4 3-iron, Mizuno MP5 4-PW
Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58
Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5
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