Sergio Garcia halts play for nearly 30mins for ruling

Sergio Garcia

Sergio Garcia drew the final day’s play of the BMW Championship to a halt for almost half an hour as he received a ruling on the 18th hole.

When the Spaniard’s approach to the par-5 found the hazard, his ball was next to a rock meaning he couldn’t play towards the pin, so he started considering a shot that would see him ricochet the ball off the rock – similar to what players have done in the past on the 17th hole at St Andrews.

He then told the official he wanted to play backwards out of the hazard and play his ball off the hospitality tent and showed that if he were to attempt the shot, the butt of his club would strike the tent - a man-made object - which would entitle him to free relief.

After discussing the situation for an age with the official, he got the drop without a penalty from within the hazard. Here's how it panned out.

“Obviously any other day when the stands are not there, you’re in the hazard, and just play it if you want to play it,” explained Garcia afterwards. “But because the grandstands are there, and the rules are there, I was able to take relief from it and it kind of worked out well for me.”

Playing partner Phil Mickelson added: "I was thinking this is what my playing partners go through most of the time. I was just on other end of it. I needed that extra 38 minutes to read that putt!"

Garcia's finish was vitally important as it booked his place in this week's Tour Championship at East Lake. Mickelson, meanwhile, agonisingly missed out by a shot.

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