Four-Shot Penalty Costs Player The Chance To Play At Augusta

The defending champion of the Augusta National Women's Amateur, Anna Davis, had a nightmare start to her defence which has ultimately cost her a return to Augusta National.

The 17-year-old left-hander was penalised four shots after thinking that it was preferred lies everywhere and she mistakenly twice cleaned her ball in the rough on the par-4 1st hole at Champions Retreat. Her bogey soon became a nine and she would go on to miss the cut by an agonising two shots after rounds of 76-72.

The leading 30 players and ties at Champions Retreat would then head to Augusta for the final round though there was some good news in that all players got to enjoy a practice round at the home of the Masters on the Friday.

She was told that she might be on for a penalty on the 4th, where she would make a double, and, to her enormous credit, she would then play her last 12 holes in four under.

"So first shot, hit a little right it's in the rough. I thought we were playing preferred lies all the way around so I mark it, clean it, put it down," Davis explained. "Hit my second shot into the rough, do the same thing. And then I make a bogey on that hole and then I get to the 4th hole and she tells me that it's only preferred lies in the fairway. So that's basically covered it.

"I was told on the 4th hole that there was a chance I was gonna get a four-shot penalty and then you know it just kind of went on from there. I didn't know I was going to get a penalty until I was finished with 18."

Needless to say Davis struggled to settle on the 4th hole before steeling herself and grinding out what turned out to be an impressive 76.

"Hole 4 I kind of struggled a little bit because I didn't know if I was going to get a penalty or not. I didn't have a very good hole on four. Just kind of went back and forth mentally, but you know the only thing you can do from there is just have a positive mindset and play the rest of your 14 holes and that's what I did. I just tried to play the next 14 holes as best as I could.

"They just wanted to know why I didn't know that it was only in the fairway. Yeah they just wanted to see my perspective of what happened, and they just told me it's obviously on me, that's my responsibility to know that. And then they gave me four shots."

Last year Davis won by a shot to beat Ingrid Lindblad and Latanna Stone.