Penalty costs Rose as Santos blooms
Golf:Justin Rose suffered a one-stroke penalty that left him three shots behind leader Ricardo Santos after the opening round of the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters today.
Runner-up to Jamie Donaldson in Abu Dhabi last week, Rose had to be content with a four-under-par 68 after he was penalised a foot from the hole on the short 17th.
England’s world number four had missed his birdie attempt and was addressing the ball ready to tap in when he noticed it moved a fraction.
European Tour referee Paul Carrigill, himself a former player on the circuit, was called and with no wind to blame for the change in position he imposed the extra shot and told Rose to move the ball back before continuing.
The incident did not unsettle him, however. After holing for a bogey four the 32-year-old found the green in two at the 589-yard last and two-putted for his sixth birdie.
One of Rose’s playing partners was Ryder Cup team-mate Martin Kaymer. He was playing with Tiger Woods last Friday when the American incurred a two-stroke penalty for taking a wrong drop and missed the halfway cut because of it.
Rose told Sky Sports he felt “completely hard done by”, but accepted the penalty was correct.
“I think that’s happened to a lot of guys in the past. To cut to the chase, the greens aren’t perfect and have a lot of ridges and humps and hollows.
“It was just unfortunate timing that as I put my putter behind the ball, which I know didn’t cause the ball to move, the ball was finding some indentation.
“I’m deemed to have caused it to move even though in your heart of hearts you know you haven’t.
“There has been a change in the rule, but that only applies to a wind gust, when you are allowed to place it back without penalty.
“Unfortunately I was on the wrong end of it, but I guess that’s the good thing about golf - you have to self-police out there. Nobody else in the group saw it, but I knew the ball had moved when I addressed it.”
Santos, whose victory in Madeira last May made him the first Portuguese winner for 20 years and earned him the Rookie of the Year trophy, finished one in front of England’s Anthony Wall, Scot Peter Whiteford and Frenchman Alexandre Kaleka.
The 30-year-old from Faro made six unsuccessful trips to the qualifying school before coming through the Challenge Tour two years ago and his fourth-placed finish on Sunday has taken him back into the world’s top 200.
“My short game was really amazing,” he said after coming home in 31. “Last week gave me a lot of confidence, but I don’t want to put any more pressure on my shoulders, I just want to enjoy it.”
Londoner Wall has had only one victory in more than 400 Tour starts, but was a joint runner-up in the Irish Open last July and, like Whiteford, did not drop a stroke.
“You don’t often get Qatar with no wind and I took advantage of it,” said the 32-year-old.
Kaymer matched Rose’s 68, while world number five Louis Oosthuizen finished with a double-bogey seven for a 71.
Sergio Garcia started his season with a 69, but defending champion Paul Lawrie and British Open champion Ernie Els could do no better than 72 and could well have to improve on that just to survive the halfway cut.
Three birdies on the back nine helped Damien McGrane to a four-under-par 68 and a share off 11th spot after the first round, while Michael Hoey is on two under after a round that included four birdies and two bogeys.
Peter Lawrie and Gareth Maybin both finished on level par.
Collated first round scores
(Gbr & Irl unless stated, Irish in bold, par 72)
65Ricardo Santos (Por)
66Anthony Wall, Peter Whiteford, Alexandre Kaleka (Fra)
67Martin Wiegele (Aut), Gary Lockerbie, Brett Rumford (Aus), Andy Sullivan, Chris Wood, Simon Khan
68 Damien McGrane,Anders Hansen (Den), Michael Campbell (Nzl), David Horsey, Martin Kaymer (Ger), Victor Dubuisson (Fra), Peter Hanson (Swe), Justin Rose, Thorbjorn Olesen (Den), Richard Green (Aus), Andreas Harto (Den), Lorenzo Gagli (Ita), Marcus Fraser (Aus)
69Steve Webster, Garth Mulroy (Rsa), David Howell, Matteo Manassero (Ita), Scott Henry, George Coetzee (Rsa), Felipe Aguilar (Chi), Ricardo Gonzalez (Arg), Joel Sjoholm (Swe), Marc Warren, Sergio Garcia (Spa), Gonzalo Fdez-Castano (Spa)
70Branden Grace (Rsa), Tom Lewis, Shiv Shankar Prasad Chowrasia (Ind), Lee Slattery, Thongchai Jaidee (Tha), Paul Casey, Jbe Kruger (Rsa), Fabrizio Zanotti (Par), Gregory Havret (Fra), Henrik Stenson (Swe), Michael Hoey
71Robert Jan Derksen (Ned), Thomas Aiken (Rsa), Mikko Ilonen (Fin), Simon Dyson, Oliver Fisher, Simon Wakefield, Prom Meesawat (Tha), Alexander Noren (Swe), Rafael Cabrera Bello (Spa), Bernd Wiesberger (Aut), Edoardo Molinari (Ita), Christian Cevaer (Fra), Jean-Baptiste Gonnet (Fra), Richard Bland, Jason Dufner (USA), Estanislao Goya (Arg), Louis Oosthuizen (Rsa), Darren Fichardt (Rsa), Ignacio Garrido (Spa), Gregory Bourdy (Fra), Mark Foster, Chris Lloyd, Thomas Levet (Fra)
72Mikael Lundberg (Swe), Soren Kjeldsen (Den), John Parry, Peter Lawrie,Jose Manuel Lara (Spa), Johan Edfors (Swe), Tommy Fleetwood, Ernie Els (Rsa), Thomas Bjorn (Den), Alejandro Canizares (Spa), Craig Lee, Jeev Milkha Singh (Ind), Hennie Otto (Rsa), Max Williams (Gbr), Colin Montgomerie, Gareth Maybin,Espen Kofstad (Nor), Marcel Siem (Ger), Maarten Lafeber (Ned), David Drysdale, Stephen Gallacher, Romain Wattel (Fra), Paul Lawrie, Keith Horne (Rsa), Justin Walters (Rsa), Christopher Doak
73Paul Waring, Kristoffer Broberg (Swe), Phillip Price, Matthew Baldwin, Andrew Dodt (Aus), Todd Hamilton (USA), Raphael Jacquelin (Fra), Graeme Storm, Joachim B Hansen (Den), Alessandro Tadini (Ita), Niclas Fasth (Swe), Paul McGinley
74Peter Erofejeff (Fin), Retief Goosen (Rsa), Robert Coles, Richard Finch, Jorge Campillo (Spa), Scott Jamieson
75Maximilian Kieffer (Ger), Dominic Foos (Ger), Chris Paisley, Fredrik Andersson Hed (Swe), Pablo Larrazabal (Spa)
76Ghanim Al kuwari (Qat), Moritz Lampert (Ger)
77Emiliano Grillo (Arg), Jose-Maria Olazabal (Spa), James Busby
81Saleh Al kaabi (Qat)