Bryson DeChambeau has been savaged by commentators and fans after a 'classless' act ignited controversy at the Ryder Cup.
The US closed out Saturday's fourball matches with an 11-5 lead for its biggest two-day advantage since 1975.
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DeChambeau and Scottie Scheffler won the day's final best-ball match 3-and-1 over Tommy Fleetwood and Viktor Hovland to split the afternoon matches and put the US in control heading into the 12 singles matches on Sunday.
However DeChambeau was at the centre of controversy when he appeared to complain about the European team's refusal to concede a short putt.
The American was left with a short putt to halve the opening hole after Hovland missed a chance to give himself and Fleetwood an early lead.
The putt appeared to be ‘inside the leather’ - the distance between the head and grip of the putter - an unspoken rule that allows players to be given short-range putts rather than having to take them in.
However the European team insisted DeChambeau complete the putt rather than conceding it, much to the bemusement of the American.
DeChabeau rolled the ball into the hole before laying down his putter to show the Europeans how close it was, before turning and staring at his opponents.
American coach Butch Harmon, who was in commentary for Sky Sports, said of DeChambeau's actions: “Come on Bryson, that’s just not good.
"It’s not right, we don’t need it. Just play golf. Classless.”
Former European captain Paul McGinley added: “This is out of order in my view. Come on, just get on with it.
“I guess we shouldn’t make too much of a deal of it. It was just a bit of petulance.”
— Mark Austin (@markaustintv) September 25, 2021
Classless move by Dechambeau laying the putter down to protest not getting a gimme. You're a damn pro. Sack up. #RyderCup
— Rick Reilly (@ReillyRick) September 25, 2021
I would make him putt everything for the rest of the week
— Steve Jackson (@Bialzibob) September 25, 2021
Shameful display by Dechambeau when his putt was not conceded at first hole. He will learn. #RyderCup2020
— Barry O'Gorman #WashYourHands (@BarryJOGorman) September 25, 2021
USA on cusp of Ryder Cup victory
There was a similar incident earlier in the day when Justin Thomas appeared to be perturbed at having to tap in a close putt against Hovland and Bernd Wiesberger.
The US need 14.5 points to win the Ryder Cup.
In the history of 12 singles matches being played at the Ryder Cup, no team has won fewer than 3.5 points.
America's other point in the afternoon came from Dustin Johnson, who improved to 4-0 for the week, pairing with Collin Morikawa for a 4-and-3 win over Ian Poulter and Rory McIlroy.
Europe's Jon Rahm and Sergio Garcia moved to 3-0 as a team this week with a 2-and-1 win over Brooks Koepka and Jordan Spieth.
Shane Lowry wrapped up Europe's other win with a 10-foot putt to save par and close out a 1-up victory over Tony Finau and Harris English.
with Associated Press
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