Top-50 ranked golfer puts with wedge, disqualified from tournament for running out of balls

Eddie Pepperell of England, follows through on a drive off the sixth tee during the second round of the PGA Championship golf tournament, Friday, May 17, 2019, at Bethpage Black in Farmingdale, N.Y. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
Eddie Pepperell, pictured here at the PGA Championship, was disqualified from the Turkish Airlines Open on Saturday for running out of golf balls. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

The world's No. 48-ranked golfer was disqualified from a tournament on Saturday when he ran out of balls.

Eddie Pepperell was competing in the Turkish Airlines Open, part of the European Tour, when he lost at least four balls on a single hole and left the course, according to ESPN’s Bob Harig.

The 28-year-old Brit was partnered with Martin Kaymer and George Coetzee but could not get past the par-5 fourth hole in a scene so bizarre that was almost out of a movie.

Seemingly identical to the final scene in the 1996 rom-com “Tin Cup,” Pepperell had trouble getting past a water hazard. But unlike Kevin Costner’s character, he was not able to keep his final ball on the course, let alone make a miraculous shot, as Kaymer described to reporters:

“Eddie hit his shots to the green, then came over to tell us he had run out of balls. Then he walked off. I thought he lost four or five. We are about 80 percent sure it was five, 20 percent four. He was quick, so it was hard to keep track. He did not ask if he could borrow one from me or George. It did not look like he wanted to play. He did not putt with his putter on the third hole; he putted with a wedge. So there was a lot happening. ...I have never seen anything like that before. I only watched it on television, in ‘Tin Cup.’ This is the first time I have seen it live.”

As Harig pointed out, Pepperell would have been allowed to borrow a ball from another competitor, although he would have been assessed a two-stroke penalty if it were a different type of ball, so he was officially DQ’d for not completing a hole. However, he would have needed to use the original type of ball by the next tee or face disqualification.

No matter how many balls Pepperell lost, it was clearly a rough day for him. Even worse than the day he played hungover at The Open Championship because even then he shot an impressive 67.

Amazingly, Pepperell is not the only player to be disqualified from a tournament this year because of a lack of golf balls stored in his bag. French golfer Clement Gerardo did the same thing in June at the European Tour's Challenge Tour when he was 10 over through 15 holes.

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