US Open 2014: Jason Millard disqualified from competing at Pinehurst for belatedly calling a penalty on himself, admitting 'I couldn't find peace about it'

Millard has admitted to grounding his club in a bunker while competing in Memphis on 2 June, admits it's 'heart-breaking but I didn't feel right'

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The Independent Online

American Jason Millard has been disqualified from next week's US Open after belatedly calling a penalty on himself in qualifying.

Millard, who qualified in Memphis, Tennessee on June 2, was playing his third shot on the 18th hole of Colonial Country Club's North Course - his 27th hole of the day - when the penalty occurred.

"I'm pretty sure I grounded my club in the bunker," said Millard, who was not disqualified until June 7. "I didn't see anything for sure but I felt something and I saw a small indentation.

"It happened so fast I really don't know 100 per cent, but deep down I believe I did. I couldn't find peace about it. For five days I practiced and I couldn't get it off my mind.

"It's heart-breaking but what I was feeling in my heart didn't feel right. It's the right decision and I am sticking with it."

Daniel B Burton, USGA vice president and chairman of the championship committee, said: "We commend Jason for bringing this matter to our attention. At this time we have no recourse but to disqualify him under the Rules of Golf and specifically Rule 34-1b."

Rule 34-1b effectively states that a competitor must be disqualified after the competition has closed if he has returned a score which failed to include a penalty which, before the competition closed, he knew he had incurred.

Millard is replaced in the field at Pinehurst by American amateur Sam Love, the second alternate from the same qualifying site.