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There is a distinction between not being aware of a violation and not knowing the rules. In this case, Woods didn’t know the rule. The mistake was on the part of Ridley, who didn’t recognize the violation and chose not to talk to Woods before he signed his card.

The club said CBS Sports announcer Jim Nantz alerted Masters officials that Woods‘ post-rounds comments were causing some doubts, leading to another review.

Woods had said after his round, “I went back to where I played it from, but went two yards further back and I tried to take two yards off the shot of what I felt I hit. And that should land me short of the flag and not have it either hit the flag or skip over the back. I felt that was going to be the right decision to take off four (yards) right there. And I did. It worked out perfectly.”

He hit that fifth shot to about 4 feet and made the putt for bogey.

Photos and video replays show his first divot clearly in front of where Woods took the second drop. Ridley said one reason he didn’t see a clear violation the first time was that Woods‘ caddie never moved from the original spot. Ridley said the Masters gets a dozen or so calls a day, and he didn’t see a violation.

“It was my decision, because it was a non-violation, that I was not going to go down and tell Tiger that we had considered this and it wasn’t a violation,” Ridley said. “I didn’t see at that point in time that really was going to add anything to where we were.”

Any regrets?

“There’s not a day that goes by that there are not some things I wish I would have done differently,” Ridley said.

That it involved Woods only made it a bigger issue.

“Take the fact that it was Tiger out of the equation and it is a fair ruling. Since it is him the debate begins about TV ratings etc etc,” former U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell said on Twitter.

In one of his more famous incidents, Woods hit a shot that went onto the roof and over the back into a parking lot at Firestone. The ball was never found, and because there was no out-of-bounds, Woods was correctly given a free drop by the practice range. Last year at Quail Hollow, he hit a shot left of the fifth green that was never found. He was allowed a free drop because fans said a man picked it up and ran off.

“There is some leeway with the signing the incorrect card. Not with intentionally not dropping as near as possible,” David Duval said on Twitter.

The revision to Rule 33 was based upon the modern era of television. One example cited was Padraig Harrington, who opened with a 65 in Abu Dhabi at the start of the 2011 season. He was disqualified when a slow-motion replay on high-definition TV revealed that his ball moved ever so slightly after he replaced his marked. Harrington didn’t realize it had moved _ a two-shot penalty _ and was disqualified for an incorrect card.

That same year, Camilo Villegas was disqualified in Hawaii when a TV viewer noticed he tamped down a divot in an area where his chip was rolling back down a slope. Rule 33 would not have applied there because Villegas did not know the rule.

Woods started the year with a rules violation. He took relief from an imbedded lie in a sandy area covered with vines in Abu Dhabi. It was determined that relief was not allowed in the sand. He was docked two shots before signing his card, and it caused him to miss the cut.

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