March 17 2011
Call him Honest John.
Aussie John Senden, who tied for second at the Copperhead Course in 2007, was in one of the early groups Thursday -- about to play his second shot on the par-5 fifth hole -- when his ball moved in the middle of his backswing.
No one saw it, and Senden went on to par the hole. But the fact that he thought the ball moved bothered him all the way up to the fifth green.
"[I] just went up to (TOUR official) Steve Rintoul and said: 'Look, this is what's happened, I want to clear it up right now, what's the deal,'" Senden said. "I knew it was a penalty for the ball moving but I wanted to make sure that I was okay hitting the ball still, because I wasn't 100 percent sure that even when I hit the ball, it was ‑‑ it just happened."
"The ball just sort of started to move ever so slightly back and by the time it started moving back, I was committed to hit the shot and I just hit it. It really didn't move. I said to my caddie, 'You know what? I'm not sure whether you saw it on the second shot.'"
Senden was penalized a shot, turning his par into a bogey. But good karma awaited -- Senden bogeyed the sixth, then played the final 12 holes in five under to shoot 67, his lowest score in two months.
"I just had to settle down after that incident and still play," Senden said. "I've been feeling good, so go out there and enjoy myself and play a great golf course."