Golf-ANWA champion Davis endures nightmare start to title defense

FILE PHOTO: Anna Davis of the United States hits from the 18th tee during the final round of the Augusta National Women's Amateur Championship at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia, U.S., April 2, 2022. REUTERS/Mike Blake

(Reuters) - Defending champion Anna Davis made a disastrous start to her Augusta National Women's Amateur title defense on Wednesday as she began her round with a quintuple bogey after breaking course regulations.

Due to damp conditions at Champions Retreat Golf Club a rule was in place that allowed players to mark, lift, and clean their ball on the fairway but Davis thought preferred lies were being played.

"I knew we were playing lift, clean and place. I asked my scorer if we were doing it like everywhere, but I guess he didn't know. But he said, yeah, we were. So whatever. It happens," Davis said.

The 17-year-old Davis was not informed of the penalties until she got to the fourth hole and went on to card a four-over-par 76 that left her 10 shots behind first-round leader Rose Zhang and in a share of 43rd place.

(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto, editing by Ed Osmond)

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