The South Korean was putting with his 3-wood for the final four holes of his second round at the Masters


Why Si Woo Kim Was Putting With A 3-Wood At The Masters

Normally when a player is three-under for their round through 14 holes at the Masters and inside the top-10 nearing the halfway point, there’s no cause to be upset.

But try telling that to Si Woo Kim.

After actually getting quite a lucky break on the 15th, he slammed his putter into the front bank that guards the green as he lined up a birdie – yes, birdie – putt.

Such was the force applied that the shaft buckled, without snapping, meaning he felt he could no longer use the club for the remainder of the round.

Instead, Kim opted to wield his 3-wood on the treacherous Augusta greens, as can be seen below:

But what do the rules say?

Well, according to section four that covers “The Player’s Equipment”, Kim could have still used the putter had he wanted to.

Related: Si Woo Kim What’s In The Bag?

It is a rule that changed in 2019, with Kim’s particular situation covered by Rule 4.1a(2), which states the following:

Use or Repair of Club Damaged During Round. If a conforming club is damaged during a round or while play is stopped under Rule 5.7a, the player normally must not replace it with another club. (For a limited exception when the player did not cause the damage, see Rule 4.1b(3)).

“But¬†no matter what the nature or cause of the damage, the damaged club is treated as conforming for the rest of the¬†round¬†(but¬†not during a play-off in¬†stroke play, which is a new¬†round).

“For the rest of the round, the player may:

  • Continue to make¬†strokes¬†with the damaged club, or
  • Have the club repaired by restoring it as nearly as possible to its condition before the damage happened during the¬†round¬†or while play was stopped, while still using the original grip, shaft and clubhead.¬†But¬†in doing so:
    • The player must not unreasonably delay play (see¬†Rule 5.6a), and
    • Any damage that existed before the¬†round¬†must not be repaired.

‚Äú’Damaged during a round’¬†means when the club‚Äôs performance characteristics are changed because of any act during the¬†round¬†(including while play is stopped under¬†Rule 5.7a), whether:

  • By the player (such as making a¬†stroke¬†or practice swing with the club, putting it in or taking it out of a golf bag, dropping or leaning on it, or throwing or abusing it), or
  • By any other person,¬†outside influence¬†or¬†natural forces.”

Luckily for the South Korean, he was able to close out his round without any disasters and will tee off in one of the final groups on Saturday at the Masters, we assume with a new putter. How the other half live, eh?

Related: 11 Things You Didn’t Know About Si Woo Kim