Japanese Golfer Pulls Self from 11 tournaments

Japanese golfer Yuko Mitsuka withdrew from 11 tournaments after being handed a record fine for slow play. The Ladies Professional Golfer's Association of Japan fined Mitsuka $21,500 Tuesday after she quit midway through the first round of the World Ladies Championship last week in protest of a two-shot penalty drawn for slow play.

On Wednesday, Mitsuka announced she was withdrawing from eight domestic tournaments and three overseas events as a result of the fine. In other words, she has banned herself from playing those tournaments.

"This is the biggest fine in Japanese Ladies Professional Golfers Association history and reflects the seriousness of what took place," the Tour's Hideaki Otani told Reuters yesterday. "The player offered to withdraw from those tournaments and the Tour accepted that as the right punishment."

Last Tuesday during the World Ladies Championship, Mitsuka was penalized two stokes for slow play. She responded by dropping her clubs and angrily walking off the course.

As the result of the golfer's action, the 25-year-old was fined and then, surprisingly, volunteered to withdraw from eight domestic and three overseas events as a sign of contrition.

"This will be a lesson to other golfers," JLPGA chief Hisako Higuchi told the Nikkan Sports newspaper. "She has to take responsibility for her actions."