Date: February 04, 2016
Author: Mark Hayes

Oh learns from brush with rulebook

Three of the biggest names in the women’s Oates Vic Open field carded rounds that might prompt you to think they’re in trouble.

But in the case of Su Oh, Karrie Webb and Laura Davies, it might pay to look a little closer.

Oh signed for a three-over par 76 on the Creek Course today playing alongside Webb whose 77 was laced with what she later described as “rust” in her first competitive round of the season.

Davies also fired a 77, but on the Beach Course.

Oh’s round, in particular, was marred by an incident of her own making that cost her a triple-bogey on the par-5 17th, her eighth hole of the day.

The 19-year-old admitted she’d have to brush up on her rules knowledge after calling a penalty on herself when caddie and former touring pro Mike Clayton told her she’d accidentally picked up her ball while it was in play.

“I hooked my drive on the 17th and took an unplayable lie because it was dead,” the Victorian said.

“I measured the two club lengths (relief) and it landed inside (when I dropped the ball), but it ran outside the tee by about a foot.

“I thought I had to redrop, so I picked up my ball and then Mike’s like, `What are you doing?’ and I called a rules official and realise now that you only have to redrop now if it rolls outside two club lengths (from that tee).

“First time I’ve heard that. I just assumed it was two clubs only.

“I don’t really want it to happen anywhere, but there’s always a first time for these things and at least I know now. I need to go through the rules better.”

Oh said she had played “pretty good”, but “hit four bad shots and didn’t cash in on the par fives".

Webb, on her first visit to 13th Beach, had played 27 holes of the gigantic Barwon Heads property, but not the first nine she encountered on the Creek Course this morning.

“I made a couple of soft bogeys early on which didn’t get me into much of a rhythm. I hadn’t seen the front nine and I shot three over by then and that’s where the wind picked up which made it a lot trickier,” said the Queenslander who said she had been practising better than the game she took out on course in a tricky wind.

“There was definitely some rust in the game today and not much trusting (in my game). It wasn’t an easy day to trust and the greens were much firmer than on the Monday when I played the back nine on the Creek Course and that throws off your trust factor a little bit.

“But hopefully I ‘ll have a good one tomorrow and get back into it.”

Davies looked in deep trouble early.

The English crowd favourite endured a horror start with a triple-bogey up the first hole and after bogeys on the third, seventh and eighth holes, she was staring at a nightmare round.

But true to the fighting spirit that took her to four major championships, the 52-year-old birdied the ninth, 11th and 14th to stem the bleeding before a late bogey consigned her to a four-over-par finish.