The British Open, the third of four golf majors held each year, started play on Thursday in England. The tournament is one of golf’s oldest and most respected. Players started at 6:30 am and fans were already lining the fairways and greens ready to cheer on their favorite player.
One of the thousands of fans at the tournament, Jason Blue from Bristol, England, was following Rory McIlory. McIlory was on the tee at no. 15 while Blue was down the right side of the fairway waiting for the group to tee off. McIlory, the world’s no. 2 player stepped up and ripped a shot down the right side and plunked Blue on the head. The ball then bounced to the out of bounds area and left a stunned Blue dazed and prone on the ground.
McIlory took another shot from the tee after a one stroke penalty. He was able to recover from the errant shot to record just a double bogey on the hole. After he took his second tee shot, McIlory went to see how the fan was. He autographed a glove for Blue and jokily told him he should have headed the ball into the field of play not out of bounds.
Blue had to have his entire head wrapped in white gauze due to a cut. He did say however, that he was okay and would return to watch the tournament again on Friday. McIlory was able to go on and shoot a 3-under par round for the day to end the day in fifth place. However, on Friday he played much worse and was five over par on the day and dropped well of the pace.