Play wiped out again at Kapalua

January 08, 2013 - 12:12:28 am

Kapalua, Hawaii: Mother Nature again turned nasty at the PGA Tour’s season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions in Hawaii yesterday, forcing play to be abandoned for a third consecutive day due to strong gusting winds.

A little more than an hour of the already long-delayed first round was possible before officials halted the action at the Kapalua Resort, scrapping the scores and aiming for a finish today to an event trimmed to 54 holes.

Thirty-six holes are planned for Monday with a two-tee start for the 30-man, winners-only field, followed by 18 holes the following day.

“We tried,” Slugger White, the PGA Tour’s vice president of rules and competition, told reporters. “We were on the edge when we started out at 11:10 and we were probably okay for about 30-45 minutes.

“And then the bottom fell out. We were having gusts out there of about 48 miles per hour. Balls were blowing off the green and we couldn’t even get a ball to come to rest on the 12th green when we stopped.

“It started off bad and got worse. We washed the round out today and we’re going to try again.”

As high winds continued to batter the Hawaiian island of Maui, chaotic scenes were the order of the day after Rickie Fowler struck the first shot.

Fellow American Matt Kuchar, who hit the first shot on the 10th hole, had a lengthy conversation with rules officials after his ball was twice blown off his tee before he eventually set off.

Scott Stallings was not quick enough to mark a one-foot putt at the 12th before his ball was blown seven feet away. REUTERS