South African golfer Erik van Rooyen had a meltdown at the PGA Championship on Friday, after finding the water at the 17th hole and later missing the halfway cut.
One observer called Van Rooyen’s emotional lashing-out with his club to be like that of a four-year-old.
Erik van Rooyen hit (or just missed) the guy behind the tee box with shrapnel from the tee marker.
This is NOT “being a fiery competitor”.
This is having the same emotional control as a four-year old. pic.twitter.com/PYdgmYyB0j
— Lou Stagner (Golf Stat Pro) (@LouStagner) May 22, 2021
Others though said Van Rooyen losing his cool was the highlight of the week so far at the year’s second major at Kiawah Island’s Ocean Course.
Erik Van Rooyen smoking the tee marker into the water on the 17th is the highlight of the PGA so far ???? pic.twitter.com/AdMdRBARYG
— Greg Law (@GregLaw_1) May 21, 2021
After knocking his ball in the water at the par-3 17th Van Rooyen took a swipe at the tee marker – twice in quick succession – and in the process lost his club head in the water.
Van Rooyen was also compared to the movie character Happy Gilmore.
McDonough’s description of the Erik Van Rooyen melt down on 17 tee was absolutely epic! “ 2 under thru 13 then comfortably within the cut line. Then made 4 at 14, a double bogie at 15, a 3 putt bogie at 16, now this at 17”, so 18 balls in the water and now 1 tee marker.” Epic!
— Tim Brando (@TimBrando) May 21, 2021
The big South African, who was well on his way to playing over the weekend, had a torrid back-nine on Friday.
The triple bogey at the 17th was the last straw for Van Rooyen, who’s score ballooned to +9, way off the cut mark of +5.
Wallace’s caddie just full snub for EVR (rightfully so) for almost getting decapitated by a tee marker. pic.twitter.com/nU0DvW7duu
— Monday Q Info (@acaseofthegolf1) May 22, 2021
The four other South Africans to miss the cut are Dylan Frittelli, George Coetzee, Charl Schwartzel and Brandon Stone.
South Africans though can be pleased with the effort of the six other locals in the field at the tournament.
Louis Oosthuizen shares the lead with veteran Phil Mickelson on five-under par, the South African 2010 Open champion seeking his second major, and just behind the leaders are Branden Grace and Christiaan Bezuidenhout, two shots off the lead.
Danie van Tonder, Dean Burmester and Garrick Higgo all played well enough to also feature on Saturday and Sunday.