Why Jon Rahm Got A Penalty During The Memorial

The new World No.1 was given a two stroke penalty for causing his ball to move in the rough

why john rahm got a penalty during the memorial
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The new World No.1 was given a two stroke penalty for causing his ball to move in the rough

Why Jon Rahm Got A Penalty During The Memorial

Jon Rahm won his 11th professional title at the Memorial Tournament to reach the coveted World No.1 position for the first time.

The Spaniard holed a stunning chip shot on the par-3 16th hole for birdie but his score of 2 was eventually a 4 after receiving the General Penalty.

Rahm caused his ball to move just before playing the shot, which is a breach of Rule 9.4 (opens in new tab).

"The rule is 9.4. It was a ball at rest by the player, moved, and since he didn't put it back, he was assessed a general penalty, which is two strokes. That's pretty much the bottom line," PGA Tour Rules Official Slugger White said.

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Rahm said he did not realise that he moved the ball and was very accepting of his penalty.

"I didn't see it. You know, I promised open honesty and I'm a loyal person, and I don't want to win by cheating," he said.

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"And it kind of happened a couple years ago, I basically told the officials to make the decision they wanted, I just explained my side and I wasn't given any penalty. And today I see it, and the ball did move. It's as simple as that.

"The rules of golf are clear. Had I seen it, I would have said something. But you have to zoom in the camera to be able to see something, and I have rough, I'm looking at my landing spot. I'm not really thinking of looking at the golf ball. I'm one of those where I'm looking down but my awareness is not on the ball.

"I want everybody to hear it: It did move. It is a penalty. As hard it is to say for how great of a shot it was -- as hard as it is to say that, I won't finish double digits under par. But it did move, so I'll accept the penalty, and it still doesn't change the outcome of the tournament. So I'm going to stay with that."

The World No.1 said the holed shot could be his greatest chip shot.

"Real highlight with that little flop shot on 16, which will probably go down so far as my greatest chip shot. I don't know if I'll ever top that," he said.

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Elliott Heath is our Senior Staff Writer and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016. He graduated in Sports Journalism in 2016 and currently manages the Golf Monthly news, 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 has also covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as three Open Championships including at Carnoustie in 2018 when he was inside the ropes with Tiger Woods. He has played 31 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Old Head and Alwoodley. He currently plays at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats anywhere between 4-6. His golfing highlight is making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, and he has made one hole-in-one.

Elliott is currently playing:

Driver: Honma TR20

3 wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Max

2 iron: Mizuno MP-18 MMC Fli-Hi

Irons: Mizuno MP5 4-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x