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A golf row between PGA Tour stalwart Rory McIlroy and American Patrick Reed has turned nasty after the world No.1 was issued with a subpoena on Christmas Eve. Reed has filed a whole host of lawsuits in the last few months against a number of figures in the game of golf, accusing them of defamation.
McIlroy has been summoned to give evidence at one of these lawsuits, but it was the timing of the subpoena being issued to him which has annoyed the star. Both golfers are competing at the Dubai Desert Classic where McIlroy admitted to ignoring his rival resulting in a disgruntled Reed reportedly throwing a tee in his direction.
“I mean, I got a subpoena [from his lawyers] on Christmas Eve,” said McIlroy. “You can’t pretend like nothing’s happening, right? I was trying to have a nice time with my family and someone shows up on your doorstep and delivers that, you’re not going to take that well.”
Reed was paid millions to join the breakaway LIV Golf series last season resulting in him being suspended from PGA Tour events. However, the Saudi-backed series is yet to receive World Golf Ranking (OWGR) points resulting in players needing to compete elsewhere to maintain their ranking to qualify for Major tournaments.
McIlroy was critical last year when LIV Golf members entered the BMW PGA Championship resulting in Reed accusing the four-time major winner of ‘insulting’ his fellow competitors with his comments. Ahead of this week’s Hero Dubai Desert Classic in Dubai the Irish Independent reported that the American attempted to say hello to his rival but was ignored resulting in a flashpoint.
McIlroy was practicing ahead of the DP World Tour event when Reed stood near the golfer intending to say hello, but the Northern Irish player ‘did not even turn his head towards him’. Reed reportedly then tried to salute McIlroy but was then ignored resulting in the American walking away, but not before throwing a tee in his opponent’s direction.
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Talking about the incident McIlroy added: “I didn’t see anything and can’t actually believe this has been turned into a story. I was down by my bag and he came up to me, and… I didn’t feel the need to acknowledge him.
“So I didn’t see a tee coming my direction at all, but apparently that’s what happened. If the roles were reversed and I’d have thrown a tee at him, I’d be expecting a lawsuit. I’m living in reality, I don’t know where he’s living. If I were in his shoes, I wouldn’t expect a hello or a handshake.”
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