Ian Poulter BOOED on first shot at The Open as St Andrews fans let LIV rebel know just how they feel
IAN POULTER was booed as he stepped up to hit his first shot at St Andrews – and almost gave the fans what wanted by doing his best to miss the biggest fairway in golf.
LIV rebel Poulter seemed rattled by the hostile reception – although he later claimed did not hear the jeers – and let fly with an horrendous snap hook.
It looked to be hurtling out of bounds, which would have been some miss – the first fairway merges into the one serving the 18th, and it’s around 125 yards wide.
Luckily for Poulter his ball pulled up just short of the out of bounds markers that separate the 18th from Links Road, and he somehow managed to salvage a par.
Things got a lot better after that, with the Ryder Cup hero making a birdie at the third, and then pulling out the putter when his attempt to drive to the green at the 352 yards ninth finished in a burnt out area right of the green.
Poulter, 46, has always been a great putter – as he showed with the five birdie blitz that proved the spark for the Miracle at Medinah ten years ago.
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This time he holed out for an eagle two from 163 feet – the longest putt ever holed in a televised event – and at three under par for the front nine his name was on top of the early leaderboard.
But the back nine was a real roller-coaster.
A bogey-birdie exchange at 11 and 12 was followed by a bad blunder at the must-birdie 14th, one of only two par five on the Old Course.
The man nicknamed ‘The Postman’ – because he always delivers at the Ryder Cup – airmailed the green with his third shot, and finished up with a bogey six.
But he got that shot by driving the green at the par four last, to set up a two putt birdie, and a three under par 69.
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