July 20, 2020 / 3:37 AM / 25 days ago

Golf: Penalty takes shine off one of Rahm's best ever shots

Jul 19, 2020; Dublin, Ohio, USA; Jon Rahm plays his shot from the fairway on the ninth hole during the final round of The Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Club. Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

(Reuters) - Jon Rahm’s two-shot penalty at the 16th hole of the Memorial Tournament on Sunday had no impact on the final placings but the Spaniard says it took the shine off one of the greatest shots of his career.

Rahm’s final round three-over-par 75 was enough for a three-shot victory at Muirfield Village Golf Club ahead of Ryan Palmer in second, and also saw the Spaniard replace Rory McIlroy at the top of the world rankings.

The highlight of the round was a brilliant chip-in from 30-feet at the 16th, which restored a four-shot cushion over Palmer with two to play, but Rahm was later handed the penalty as video replays showed his ball had moved while addressing the shot.

“All I can say is as minimal as it was, it moved; I accept it. It doesn’t change the outcome of the tournament,” said Rahm.

“It just puts a little bit of an asterisk in it in the sense of I wish I could just keep that birdie because it was one of the greatest shots of my life.

“Had I seen it, I would have said something or maybe questioned — not questioned, asked for a rules official and explained what happened and would have gone from there.

“... But the rules of golf are clear, and the ball did move... I accept the penalty. That goes to show that you have to fight until the end.”

Reporting by Arvind Sriram in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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