McIlroy Fights Off Trigger-Happy Snappers For BMW PGA Opening Low

Wentworth, Surrey ….

Rory McIlroy stared down trigger-happy snappers over his closing two holes to still produce his lowest Wentworth opening round of a 67 on day one of the BMW PGA Championship.

McIlroy was five-under par and just one shot off the lead with two holes remaining and both par-5s on the famed West Course.

The World No. 8 played a poor shot way left off the tee at 17 and immediately turned around looking at a group of snappers to be clearly heard declaring:  ‘Photographers!!’

It led to McIlroy walking off with a par when most were taking birdie 4s.

McIlroy was then slap, bang in the middle of the par-5 18th when a second photographer upset the Northern Irishman and leading to McIlroy again turning around to stare at the group of snappers.

Rory McIlroy has other cameras trained on him following a round of 67 on day one of the BMW PGA Championship

But then McIlroy was at his diplomatic best in brushing off both incidents after leaving the scorer’s hut just two shots behind Dane Lucas Bjerregaard who birdied two of his three closing holes in a bogey-free 65.

“The second shot on 18 is tough enough without something going off on your back swing but it’s fine and it happens every now and then, and I am sure he didn’t mean to do it,” McIlroy said.

“I had gotten over it as I hit a great chip shot that nearly went in for eagle but then I know that the green there on 18 goes toward the water in front of the green, so I tried to hit it straight but ended-up making a tentative stroke on it.”

The photographer on 18 later approached McIlroy apologising profusely and with McIlroy gracious in playing down the matter.

McIlroy’s first round effort was a lowest opening day effort and only the second time he’s broken 70 on day one since making his BMW PGA debut in 2008 and shooting a 74.

His prior opening best was a 68 in 2014 and when he went onto to win at Tour HQ.

“I played better than I have done in the past few weeks and I was just trying to straighten a few things out,” he said.

“I saw some good shots out there and also some better drives while for the most part, I putted well so everything was sort of right there.

“If I can just produce more of that tomorrow and over the weekend I should have a decent chance.

“So aside from what happened on the 17th tee and 18 it was a really good start and something to build on.”

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