Blog Entry

Rory makes wrong sort of waves at Irish Open

Posted on: July 28, 2011 10:14 am
Edited on: July 28, 2011 11:29 am

Reigning U.S. Open champion Rory McIlroy splashed a shot into the water on the final hole of the Irish Open on Thursday morning, then waded into a controversy of a different sort entirely.

After leading for much of the back nine, McIlroy hit a risky shot from a fairway bunker on the 18th on Thursday that flew into a greenside pond, leading to a double-bogey and a 71 that left him four shots off the early lead.

Jay Townsend, a longtime commentator for the BBC who is also working this week on the European Tour Productions broadcast of the event airing on the Golf Channel in the States, was unsparing in his description of McIlroy’s sloppy round.

“McIlroy's course management was shocking,” Townsend, a former tour professional, wrote on his Twitter account.

He wasn’t through.

“Some of the worst course management I have ever seen, beyond under-10 boys' golf competition," Townsend continued.

McIlroy, 22, quickly thumbed out a feisty response that many believed crossed the line.

McIlroy quickly replied: "Shut up ... you're a commentator and a failed golfer, your opinion means nothing!"

It means something to the broadcast networks that employ him, and Townsend has been plying his trade for years, gaining a great deal of respect from his peers. Twitter followers immediately began weighing in with suggestions that McIlroy’s caddie, J.P. Fitzgerald, didn’t have enough spine to talk his man out of risky decisions.

Townsend then Tweeted that McIlroy, “should hire Stevie Williams, as I thought J.P. allowed some SHOCKING course management today.”

Later, when McIlroy called him out, Townsend wrote, “Sorry, but I stand by my comments.”

McIlroy followed with, “Well, I stand by my caddie.”

Townsend, assigned to follow McIlroy's threesome all morning, first questioned McIlroy's decision to hit a driver off the 18th tee during the Golf Channel's tape-delayed broadcast in the States. McIlroy, ranked No. 4 in the world, shoved the drive into a fairway bunker as others laid back off the tee.

To which another commentator in the Golf Channel feed, Denis Hutchinson, replied, "You don't want to tame him down too much," as he applauded McIlroy's youthful spontaneity.

That notion didn't sit well with Townsend.

Just after McIlroy yanked his approach shot and the ball was still in the air, headed toward a certain watery grave, Townsend said, "There you go, that's why you don't hit it in the bunker -- watch this. You guys talked about 'refreshing,' the way he plays. He plays silly. Several times already today."

A Golf Channel spokesman had no comment on Townsend's remarks, verbal or written.


Since: Mar 3, 2009
Posted on: July 28, 2011 10:47 am

Rory makes wrong sort of waves at Irish Open

Lets not forget Carrot-top's comments about the British course weather conditions being unfair also.

Seems the little spoiled brat is coming out of him.

Seems little Row-ry can't handle the pressure of being told how great he is, then having to go out and be consistant........not a one tourny wonder.


Since: Sep 13, 2006
Posted on: July 28, 2011 10:46 am

Rory makes wrong sort of waves at Irish Open

Good for Rory... Commentators think they can do whatever they want and get away with whatever they want to say because they think they are experts... This may be, but there are professional ways to describe someone's  poor play.  His first comment I was okay with, but than the comic relief he decides to plug in to either attempt to showcase his talents in comedy or to be "the guy" he was out of line... Just as players can be fined for their actions, commentators should be fined for their words!

Since: Nov 8, 2009
Posted on: July 28, 2011 10:42 am

Rory makes wrong sort of waves at Irish Open

What... no opinion Elling? If Tiger would have said this you would have written three paragraphs about how awful of a human being he is.

Since: Aug 30, 2007
Posted on: July 28, 2011 10:39 am

Rory makes wrong sort of waves at Irish Open

 "Shut up ... you're a commentator and a failed golfer, your opinion means nothing!"
Truer words were never spoken. Listen up Elling!

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