MacIntyre Not Wanting A ‘Rules Official’ Role In A Second Straight Major.

Robert MacIntyre tees-up on Thursday in just a second career major hoping he does not have to again take on a ‘rules official’ role over the opening two rounds at the PGA Championship in San Francisco.

MacIntyre’s maiden appearance in a major some 13 months ago at the Open Championship was clouded in controversy on day two of competition at Royal Portrush.

Scotland’s top-ranked golfer publically took Kyle Stanley to task for not calling ‘fore’ after the American’s errant tee shot into the crowd at the 17th hole.

Stanley’s ball bizarrely hit the hand of MacIntrye’s caddy Greg Milne’s mother and though she was not injured, MacIntyre gave Stanley ‘both barrels’ declaring at the time: “I said to him (Stanley) I wasn’t happy and he didn’t like the response. His ball went straight in the crowd. It was in the crowd from the word go, and you expect him to shout ‘fore’ which he didn’t.”

Stanley, who had qualified for sixth Open by finishing top-30 in the prior season’s FedEx Cup finals, then didn’t take kindly to the Scot’s verbal attack.

The American speaking a day after the incident said: “To me it’s kind of a nonissue. I’m not really sure why he (MacIntyre) decided to make such an issue about it. I know it hit his caddie’s mom’s hands off the bounce, and that’s unfortunate.

“But as far as I’m concerned, a number of people yelled “fore.” He made the argument that since I hit the ball that it maybe should have come out of my mouth first. I guess I can see that.

“It certainly wasn’t my intention to put anyone in harm’s way. I had my wife in the gallery, my coaches. So, I’m surprised it’s kind of come to this point.”

MacIntyre put the incident aside to finish T6th behind Shane Lowry while Stanley ended in the mid-60s.

The Oban lefty this week will tee-up alongside Americans Kevin Na and former Masters champion, Patrick Reed.

Patrick Reed being hit with a two-shot penalty after this inclident at last year’s Hero World Challenge

Reed found himself under glaring Rules of Golf headlights last December at the Tiger Woods hosted Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas.

Reed was slapped with a two-stroke penalty after clearly being deemed on TV to have ‘improved his lie’ after twice moving sand while taking practice swings in a sandy waste area at the 11th hole during the second round of the event at Albany Golf Club.

Reed, and now playing in a first Major since the incident, said he had not intended to gain any advantage, but officials said intent was irrelevant.

And Na is not without some controversy, not that it centres on the golf course.

Moments after capturing last October’s Shriners Hospital Open, and his second win of 2019, he spoke to the Golf Channel in Korean but then twice declined at the winner’s press conference to reveal what he’d said.

It was a week later when Na, who was born in South Korea and moved to the U.S., at age of 8, revealed his message was in reference to a past engagement with a South Korean woman that was broken off in 2014.

A meeting that same year between the two families turned sour with Na revealing: “Her dad told me, ‘If you don’t change your mind and marry my daughter I’m coming after you.’”

Na was jeered days later by the woman’s mother, who arrived at the 2014 Korean Open with a sign that when translated read: “American Golfer Na! Give back my daughter’s life as cleanly as you sent her stuff back.”

Na’s ex-fiancée then filed a lawsuit that included ‘salacious details about the couple’s sex life’ that made for headlines in the South Korean tabloids.”

Na countersued for defamation of character.

He said: “Not only did I win my suit but she had to pay me close to $50,000, when a typical ruling in a defamation lawsuit is only a few hundred dollars. I think that shows the judge agreed how damaging the statements were.”

However the controversy still lingers as Na and his now wife, Julianne, were set to show off their Las Vegas home on a Korean TV reality show this 2020 summer but the episode was cancelled because of a ‘spate of renewed bad publicity’ following Na’s message last October.

For MacIntyre’s sake let’s hope it is an uneventful two rounds for the Home of Golf’s leading golfer.

MacIntyre, and a lone Scot in the 102nd PGA Championship, will tee-off in the company of Reed and Na at 1.14pm local US time or 9.14pm UK time.

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