Mark Hensby was a late addition to the field at this week’s Palmetto Championship. He also retired early after adding 10 penalty strokes to his score in the first round.
The 49-year-old Australian, trying to make his first PGA Tour in five years, had completed his first eight holes Thursday in Congaree when he noticed something strange with his golf ball. The Titleist ProV1 had a little unknown point on it.
“I asked my caddy, ‘Hey, what’s that dot on the ball? I’ve never noticed this before; have they done something with the new pro V1? ‘ Hensby told PGATour.com. “And he didn’t know it, so I asked my playing partners, and they said, ‘This is a low spin ball.’ Now I don’t use that ball anymore so there was a lot of confusion as to where it came from – none of my others got the point – but we knew I had played the wrong ball.
Hensby, who thought he started playing the wrong ball after dropping his third shot in the water at the fourth hole, was then tied to two strokes for each hole he played with the wrong ball. Under model G-4 local rule, Hensby was penalized 10 shots in total.
He would play his last 10 holes in 1 on a 13 of 84 card.
“After receiving the penalty it was obviously difficult from that point on, and it was a shame because I knew my tournament was over,” said Hensby, who couldn’t even make it on Friday. after withdrawing from the event. He told PGATour.com he was feeling stiff after driving a moving truck from Scottsdale, Ariz. To San Antonio, a 14-hour trip last Sunday.
Palmetto Championship in Congaree: open field scores | Full coverage
As to how Hensby ended up with the stray Titleist ball, it was later determined that he and Pat Perez accidentally traded the balls while hitting putts on the practice green before the round.
“Somehow I picked up one of Pat’s balls and he ended up with one of mine,” Hensby said. “I only found out because Titleist wanted to get to the bottom of it. I thought they had a bad bullet in the sleeve that I had. If you look at the two balls, it’s hard to tell the difference. It’s not like one is black and the other is red. They’re both black, but one has a little dot on it and the other doesn’t.
“Unfortunately, I didn’t notice it. I’m glad he didn’t use mine.