England’s Simon Dyson is unfortunately now a part of golfing history and the first-ever golfer to be disqualified via social media after being thrown out of the BMW Masters in Shanghai.
Dyson was among six players tied in second place on four under par after day two of the $7m event.
However a number of overnight emails and tweets resulted in European Tour Chief Referee, John Paramor calling for video footage of Dyson tapping down what looked like a spike mark with his golf ball on the 8th green.
If it was supposedly a spike mark then the spike mark is still visible as he lines up his putt.
In a statement from Paramor he said: “Simon Dyson has been disqualified from the BMW Masters presented by SRE Group under the Rules of Golf (6-6d). Simon was then found to have breached rule 16-1a, which states that a player must not touch his line of putt.
“Television viewers alerted The European Tour to the incident, which took place on the eighth green during the second round, and when the footage was reviewed Simon was seen to touch the line of his second putt after marking and lifting his ball on the green. He subsequently failed to add a two-shot penalty to his score when signing his card, and as a result has now been disqualified.”
Paramor later added: “Simon remarked that he couldn’t even remember the incident.
Unfortunately, it’s a very sad thing and his event is over.”
However Paramor later confirmed it was two emails and a number of comments on various Twitter accounts that first brought the matter to notice while he made the revelation that he’d spoken to a player’s wife this morning who remarked: “Oh, I saw that mentioned on Facebook.”
The six-time Tour winner was too upset to talk about the incident and headed straight for Pudong Airport and a flight home.
Had he finished second this week Dyson stood to earn a prize cheque of some Euro 570,000.
It now means Dyson, who arrived in China lying in 66th place on the Race to Dubai, will not earn any money this week and will now have to stake his DP World Tour Championship chances on next fortnight’s Turkish Airlines Open.