Avantha contender disqualified

2012-02-19 13:08

New Delhi - Avantha Masters contender Peter Whiteford of Scotland was on Sunday disqualified from the final round for a moved ball the previous day, organisers announced.

Whiteford, who led the first two rounds in Gurgaon in India and was one stroke behind leader Jbe Kruger after the third, was penalised for an error on the 18th fairway during his round on Saturday.

The European Tour’s chief referee John Paramor said the rules committee were prompted by television viewers to review footage of the incident before play began on Sunday.

"On the 18th fairway during the third round while playing his approach shot, Peter Whiteford felt that his ball may have moved," Paramor said in a statement.

"For confirmation he asked his caddy, a fellow competitor and a TV cameraman, who said they didn’t think it had, and so he continued on to finish the hole and sign his scorecard for 72.

"Overnight several viewers contacted the European Tour website saying that Whiteford’s ball had in fact moved on the 18th hole. This was reviewed by the rules committee who were able to determine that the ball had, in fact, moved.

"Whiteford should have incurred a penalty of one stroke and replaced the ball. As he did not do so, he was disqualified for signing for a score lower and failing to include the penalty he had incurred."

Paramor said that if Whiteford had contacted one of the rules committee members before signing his scorecard, the footage would have been reviewed at the time and he would have avoided disqualification.

There was no immediate comment from the 31-year-old Scot.

The $2.4 million Avantha Masters, India's richest golf event, has been tri-sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours and the Professional Golf Tour of India.