Just how strict are the rules at Augusta National?

According to Lorne Duncan, the caddie for U.S. Amateur champion Matthew Fitzpatrick, he won't be allowed to work for the 19-year-old this weekend because of a medical condition with his feet.

Augusta National's policy is that caddies must wear sneakers. Fitzpatrick prefers sandals because of his condition.

Duncan (below, left) wrote on his blog that he attempted to discuss with officials his unique situation but was shut down.

"I went to speak to the powers that be at Augusta National about alternative foot wear that would allow me to get through the week but my inquires were met with a resounding 'No.' I spoke to the head person there who is about as bright as a post and about as malleable as one. My feet were so sore after one practice round in runners that I had no alternative but to withdraw my services."

Fred Ridley, the chairman of the Masters competition committee, said Duncan's concerns were considered but ultimately the club would not bend.

"Duncan was told he had to wear tennis shoes like all caddies," Ridley said. "We are not treating him any different."

Despite a late push by Crocs, Duncan ultimately had to sit out the tournament.


For his part, Fitzpatrick said Duncan's plight won't be a distraction. He'll be accompanied on the course by Ricky Elliot, who normally caddies for Brooks Koepka.

"It doesn't bother me," Fitzpatrick said. "I'm very happy to be here and look forward to the week with an experienced caddie on the bag."

Paired with defending champion Adam Scott on Thursday, Fitzpatrick shot a respectable 76.

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