Francesco Molinari knows he’s not blameless, but it appears he wishes the standards were more consistent.
The Italian was hit with a bad time during Thursday’s opening round of the WGC-Mexico Championship, and it did not sit well with him.
It’s not that Molinari disagreed with the idea that he went over the allotted time. The frustration stems from his contention that his being hit with a bad time is not consistent with how this is applied to other players:
Does Molinari have a point? It’s not a simple issue.
While what he tweeted sounds unfair, it’s important to note that players in PGA Tour events are only timed on shots when they are put on the clock – which happens when a group is deemed out of position by an official. The group is notified it is on the clock.
That’s when the timing comes into play (50 seconds for the first to play, 40 seconds for the others in the group). If a group isn’t on the clock, a player can take all the time he needs and is in zero danger of getting a bad time.
But Molinari, 35, clarified he isn’t a fan overall of that current setup.
Let’s also note that Molinari was not penalized on Thursday. One bad time in a round is a warning, it takes a second one in the same round for a player to be penalized for slow play.
As Molinari himself pointed out, a second bad time in the same season would lead to a fine. So he’s not facing that yet, either.
Overall, Molinari is not disputing he took a bad time. He appears to be implying the system could use a good revamp.
He wouldn’t exactly be alone there. The lack of penalties for slow play on the PGA Tour has been an issue to many for several years. It took an odd situation in a team event last year for the PGA Tour to hand out its first slow-play penalty since 1995.
One fellow pro golfer chimed in on Molinari’s venting.
What are your thoughts on Francesco’s frustration?