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Major Win or Major Distraction

OAKMONT, PA - JUNE 19:  Dustin Johnson of the United States chats with a rules official on the fifth green during the final round of the U.S. Open at Oakmont Country Club on June 19, 2016 in Oakmont, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)

On Monday morning after Dustin Johnson won his maiden major everybody was talking about his final round and how it was great to finally see him get over that major hurdle….
Incorrect, everybody, spectators and even players have been questioning the decision made by the USGA that has over shadowed DJ’s first major win at Oakmont.

On the 5th hole Dustin called a rules official and explained that his ball had moved but he had not caused the movement. His playing partner Lee Westwood agreed that he hadn’t caused the movement and the rules official with the group cleared him of any wrong doing and Dustin continued to hole out for par.

Unfortunately, through the use of slow motion review, USGA rules officials felt otherwise. They approached Johnson on the 12th tee to inform him that the incident on the 5th green was being reviewed for a potential breach of the rules, which could result in a one shot penalty. The outcome would be decided at the completion of his round.

His playing partner Westwood made sure USGA officials knew of his anger at this decision and even demanded to see the same footage that was shown to Dustin after the round. Social media blew up with various fans, viewers and fellow players speaking out about their dislike at the decision. Dustin was eventually penalised the one shot as the USGA deemed him to have caused the movement. Luckily it did not matter and he was still crowned the 2016 US Open Champion.

The USGA have since apologised for the disruption the ruling caused to everyone involved. The fact Dustin still had seven holes left to play and went on to win, even with the unknown of the potential penalty looming is testament to the strong mental game he showed the entire week.

By Rachael McQueen, Community Engagement Executive at Shot Scope

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