Maui Sports

UPDATE: High Winds Force TOC Re-Start on Monday

January 6, 2013, 2:30 PM HST
* Updated January 7, 10:13 AM
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High winds continued Sunday and PGA Tour officials eventually halt play again. Photo by Christian Petersen, Getty Images.

By Rodney S. Yap

The raging wind patterns continued to wreak havoc Sunday on the defenseless Plantation Course forcing yet another halt to the first round of the Hyundai Tournament of Champions.

With high winds of 50 mph blowing golf balls off the greens, play was stopped in the winners-only, season-opening tournament when the horn sounding at 12:20 p.m. local time. At that point, six golfers had yet to tee off.

A frustrated Vice President of Rules and Competition for the PGA Tour Slugger White said: “You just can’t play in this. It’s difficult to walk in it much less play golf.”

As a result, all scorecards will be wiped clean again and the first round will be re-started on Monday with players going off the first and 10th tees beginning at 7:10 a.m.

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Officials hope to get in 36 holes on Monday and 18 more on Tuesday for the event to be official. The last Tuesday finish on the PGA Tour was seven years ago at the Booz Allen Classic.

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After a four-hour delay, players finally teed off at 11:10 a.m. But almost immediately erratic conditions made for unprecedented play.

“We were on the edge starting at 11:10 and I think for 30 or 40 minutes we were still on the edge — then all of a sudden we get this big gusts of more than 48 miles per hour and we just couldn’t keep balls on the free. At 11 we had one blow off, and we couldn’t get any to rest at 12.”

Matt Kuchar watched as his ball got blown off the tee on No. 10.

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Ben Curtis saw his ball blow off the green on No. 11 en route to a double bogey. He later added a triple bogey.

Not long after, play was stopped for good and scores discarded for a second time this week. High winds also wiped out Friday’s originally scheduled opening round.

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