Paige Spiranac wants strict punishment for pace-of-play violations: '40 seconds is a long time'

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    Golf influencer Paige Spiranac weighed in on the sport’s pace of play debate which sparked up during the Masters as it appeared competitors were upset with Patrick Cantlay’s timing.

    Spiranac, who has more than 3.7 million followers on Instagram and another 1.4 million on TikTok, gave her take on the controversy. She began with a tweet, which read, “40 seconds is a long time.”

    “Slow play in golf has been a huge topic of discussion, so let’s talk about it,” she said. “The conversation picked up steam when Jon Rahm and Brooks Koepka were waiting on every single hole at Augusta, honestly, I’ve seen paint dry faster than that round was finished.”

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    Paige Spiranac in Las Vegas

    Paige Spiranac attends ACM Lifting Lives Topgolf Tee-Off & Rock On at Topgolf Las Vegas on March 6, 2022 in Las Vegas. (David Becker/Getty Images for ACM)

    Spiranac added that the debate always stems from the players are competing for a lot of money at the majors and, because of that, they should take their time. However, Spiranac added that rules are not changed in any sport where players are essentially also competing for money and more.

    “And the rebuttal is always, ‘But they’re playing for majors and a lot of money, so they should take their time.’ Look at any other sport. They’re not just going to extend the time because they’re playing for a championship,” she said.

    “Slow play is unsportsmanlike and a form of cheating. I don’t understand how this is not fixed yet. It’s easy — penalize them if they don’t hit it in 40 seconds. That’s it.”

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    Koepka, who finished second at Augusta National, seemingly called out Cantlay when he criticized the group ahead of him and eventual winner Rahm.

    Paige Spiranac at 2023 Maxim party

    Paige Spiranac attends the TAO x Maxim Big Game Party at Southwest Jet Center on Feb. 11, 2023 in Scottsdale, Arizona. (Marcus Ingram/Getty Images)

    However, Cantlay said ahead of the RBC Heritage that the day was slow for everyone on the course. 

    “Yeah, I mean, we finished the first hole, and the group in front of us was on the second tee when we walked up to the second tee, and we waited all day on pretty much every shot,” he told reporters at a press conference. 

    “We waited in 15 fairway, we waited in 18 fairway. So, I imagine it was slow for everyone.”

    Cantlay, who sits on the Player Advisory Council (PAC), also noted that the course at Augusta National, coupled with the conditions of the day, contributed to a slower round. 

    “Yeah, one thing that’s interesting sitting on the PAC is you get all the numbers and the data, and rounds have taken about the same length of time for the last 10 or 20 years that they currently take. When you play a golf course like Augusta National where all the hole locations are on lots of slope and the greens are really fast, it’s just going to take longer and longer to hole out,” he said.

    Patrick Cantlay speaks ahead the RBC Heritage

    Patrick Cantlay speaks to the media prior to RBC Heritage at Harbour Town Golf Links on April 11, 2023 in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. (Tracy Wilcox/PGA TOUR via Getty Images)

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    “So, I think that may have been what attributed to some of the slow play on Sunday, and then also when the wind is gusting and the wind is blowing maybe inconsistently, that’s when guys will take a long time, too. I think that’s just the nature of playing professional golf, where every shot matters so much.”

    Fox News’ Paulina Dedaj contributed to this report.

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