Rude: PGA Tour likely to act soon on Singh
Now that the Masters is over, the PGA Tour is likely to act soon on the case of Vijay Singh, one Tour insider said Wednesday.
In early February, the three-time major champion admitted he used deer-antler spray, but was unaware it could have contained IGF-1, a banned substance with HGH-like properties. The review has gone beyond the 45 days the Tour used as a ballpark timeline.
The Tour apparently didn’t want to take away focus from the Masters, where Singh is a past champion, the Tour source said.
In a sense, Singh’s mistake was as much not asking for a ruling as it was taking the substance. Per the Rules of Golf, players are responsible for knowing the rules of the Tour’s drug policy.
Guy Kinnings, an IMG agent who represents Singh, said Wednesday the Tour said it would “let us know ahead” of any action. But Kinnings had not yet been notified, he said from the United Kingdom.
“Vijay has said throughout that he did not do anything knowingly,” Kinnings said. “He has assisted as much as he can in the (Tour’s) process.”
While IMG represents the golfer, Singh has “handled (this matter) very much himself,” Kinnings said. Another person familiar with the situation, though, said Singh has employed a lawyer, a move that likely has prolonged the case.
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Some assorted thoughts . . .
• Golfers anchoring putters against their bodies have now won all four major championships. With a ban apparently looming, we are going from the Anchoring Slam to anchoring being slammed.
• Considering that an Australian had never won the Masters before Sunday, I couldn’t help but thinking this as Adam Scott dueled Argentine Angel "The Duck" Cabrera down the stretch: Aussies like kangaroos, not ducks.
• The Tiger Woods two-shot penalty controversy caused quite the stir of emotions. Last time Woods created such a fuss, a hydrant, tree and tabloid were involved instead of a flagstick, drop and rulebook.
• You could argue that when Woods, then tied for the lead, clanged that terrific approach shot off the flagstick at the 15th Friday, he got a worse break than Jean Van de Velde on the 72nd hole of the 1999 Open Championship. Woods didn’t really do anything wrong–until he played from the wrong spot and triggered the firestorm. Van de Velde hit an iron shot and got a worse-case ricochet off a grandstand. The difference is Woods had 36 holes under dark clouds to recover.
• For decades all we’ve heard about Augusta National’s greens is that they are fast, fast and faster. They’re so slick that I’ve seen a player four-putt from 6 feet. Sometimes players shouldn’t mark their ball with a dime because it might slide off the green. I mean, CBS’ Gary McCord got banned from the broadcasts years ago for waxing about how fast they were. Then on Sunday, Woods and Brandt Snedeker said they were done in because the greens were too slow. To this I say, careful what you wish for. If the Lords of Augusta read those comments, the greens might get slicker than Bill Clinton next year.
• Remarkably, 14-year-old Tianlang Guan of China was Masters low amateur. In a related development, officials also cited him as slow amateur.
• Bubba Watson and Kevin Na each got a 10 on the par-3 12th hole Sunday. Considering water was involved, did they think this was Olympic diving?
• I’ve seen some sports hospitality venues during my day, but none that tops the Masters’ new – and expensive – Berckmans Place (estimated $6,000 for a seven-day ticket) tucked behind the trees to the right of the fifth hole. Replica putting greens from Nos. 7, 14 and 16. Three restaurants. Big flat-screen TVs everywhere. You can get so comfortable over there, you could skip walking the National’s hills for a good while in favor of a cushy seat.
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I know a lot of golfers who have played all around the country. But now there’s someone who plans to play across the country this summer – literally.
Luke Bielawski, 24, of Fishers, Ind., plans to hit a golf ball coast-to-coast across the entire United States starting May 7 near Ventura, Calif., and ending in Charleston, S.C., about 110 days later. He estimates he’ll need to take about 48,000 swings while taking a route that will go through Phoenix, Dallas and Atlanta, among other areas.
An Indiana University law student, Bielawski hopes to raise $100,000 and fund 12 scholarships to Providence Cristo Rey High School in Indianapolis.
He plans to play the ball as it lies, mostly taking country roads. A donated Gator will serve as his golf cart in between shots, though many situations will dictate that he walk. He will have a support vehicle (27-foot RV) and two helpers – one to drive, the other to spot his ball. They will spend a few nights in hotels, but mostly sleep in the RV in church parking lots.
It is unknown whether he will take improper drops, get penalized for slow play, use an anchored putter and hit any cars, moving or stationary.