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The Players Championship is set to finish TUESDAY for the first time as drenched fans leave to slip their stomachs on Sawgrass’s 17th hole

The weather-affected player championship could be decided to end TUESDAY for the first time in the event’s 40-year history.

With thunderstorms ravaging Sawgrass, referee Gary Young admitted finishing on Monday was almost inevitable – and “the possibility of going on Tuesday is there.”

The Players Championship can be decided for the first time on Tuesday

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The Players Championship can be decided for the first time on TuesdayCredit: Getty
A group of spectators saw the funny side of the cataclysm by sliding their stomachs on the 17th hole

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A group of spectators saw the funny side of the cataclysm by sliding their stomachs on the 17th holeCredit: Twitter @PGATOUR

But at one group of spectators witnessed the comical scene of belly sliding down a bank on the iconic 17th hole in a downpour.

The players have finished on Monday seven times in the past, the last time in 2005. But it has never lasted another 48 hours.

Rory McIlroy has struggled to cover long distances, after his weekend game at the Arnold Palmer Invitational continued.

McIlroy got off to a brilliant start as the storms eased enough to allow four hours of play yesterday morning.

He managed just two holes on his first day, bogey-birdie start, and this time he opened with birdies on both the third and fourth holes to race to the bottom two.

But instead of the player firing a sizzling 65 in the first round at Bay Hill to open up a two-shot lead, he let Ropey Rory, who shot 76-76 over the weekend, disappear into the group.

He hit back on the sixth round, and other boges at 10 and 14 sent him down a tie, and split in 97th – seven behind early catchers Tommy Fleetwood , Tom Hoge and Brice Garnett.

That’s made even more difficult given that McIlroy is known as a mud freak.

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The four-time Major winner takes the tee off long to shed light on the fact that the ball is dying on the fairways, and throwing darts into rain-soaked lawns is one of his main strengths.

When the horn sounded at 11:15 a.m. local time, McIlroy looked confused and asked, “What are we stopping for?”

The rain pouring through his boots should have given him a clue.

Young said Jacksonville has experienced strange conditions, as questions about the wisdom of moving such a major event back to March from mid-May three years ago inevitably arise again.

“It’s very unusual to have such an extended pattern at this time of year, looking back at the historical data on it,” he said. I would say at this point it was just bad luck.

“We have received about 2.5 inches of rain at this point in the last 24 hours. We fought through some pretty tough conditions.

“The staff did a great job keeping up with the pitch as much as they could, squeezing, trying to manage the play through some of the really tough boxes we were facing.

“Unfortunately, we have come to a point where now there is no imminent window behind the weather front we are entering. And there are some lightning bolts heading in this direction.

“We knew it was going to be a moment where we would have to fight too hard to keep up. The golf course has reached the point of being unplayable, and we will have to deal with it.

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“If an opportunity presents itself, we will find a way to return to it. So, unfortunately, we need to keep the players, in case that opportunity presents itself. ”

As they gazed out over the flooded fairways and lawns with large puddles despite the subsystem at Sawgrass, the 46 players who hadn’t finished the opening round couldn’t be satisfied at the prospect of having to hang around for several hours.

https://www.the-sun.com/sport/4877272/players-championship-tuesday-finish-belly-slide-sawgrass/ The Players Championship is set to finish TUESDAY for the first time as drenched fans leave to slip their stomachs on Sawgrass’s 17th hole

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