Zach Johnson Accidentally Hits Ball With Practice Swing

Zach Johnson Accidentally Hits Ball With Practice Swing

The ball appeared to ricochet off the tee marker on the right, before coming to rest a couple of metres away.

The key reason that Johnson's mishit didn't count as a stroke comes down to two things - the contact was unintentional, and the ball was not yet in play. Under USGA rules, Johnson was allowed to re-tee without penalty because it was not intentional.

"Shoot, they got that?"

"I don't think I could do it again if I even tried", Johnson said.

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Luckily, the 43-year-old emerged unscathed - pride not withstanding - as no penalty was applied and he went on to birdie the 13th hole.

Under Rule 6.2b (5) on starting a hole: "If a teed ball falls off the tee or is knocked off the tee by the player before the player has made a stroke at it, it may be re-teed anywhere in the teeing area without penalty". "I actually hit a really good tee shot after that, so I think I recovered nicely".

Unfortunately for Johnson, his weekend prospects look slim after two consecutive bogeys on the final two holes of his round have left him looking very vulnerable at +3, with current leaders Francesco Molinari and Jason Day sharing the clubhouse lead at -7.

Johnson, playing with Phil Mickelson and Matt Kuchar, told the golfers they could laugh at his mistake. "I know there's supposedly footage of every shot hit here at Augusta this year, and I'm hoping to see that footage at some point".