In a breach as shocking as when “Birdman” strolled on to the 72nd green of the 2012 U.S. Open during the trophy presentation, a fan calmly strolled onto the 10th tee box during the first round of the Scottish Open yesterday, and took a club out of Rory McIlroy’s bag, and then tried a few practice swings.
Video of the incident is here, with two different camera views.
At roughly 8 am as McIlroy was preparing to tee off and conferring with his caddie and co-competitor Jon Rahm, the fan walked onto the box, grabbed McIlroy’s driver and head cover, and went to a corner of the tee box. while a flabbergasted McIlroy and caddie looked on. Review of the video shows the man, who has not yet been identified, walking unsteadily after taking McIlroy’s club and after police were called to remove him. One wonders if too many Pimms cups had anything to do with it.
The incident called to mind the time one Andrew Dudley, a.k.a. “Jungle Birdman” walked on the green at Olympic Club during the closing ceremonies of the 2012 U.S. Open and made bird calls into the microphone as some sort of eco-protest. Then USGA Executive Director Mike Davis’s single-handed open field tackle ended that sorry scene quickly and provided a time capsule photo to haunt Davis for the rest of his days. Any harder and he’s have ripped Birdman’s wing off.