Australian golfer, Rhein Gibson, has been forced to apologize to his caddie after footage of him throwing his putter head cover at bagman Brandon Davis emerged.
Gibson lost his cool on the closing hole of the Bahamas Great Abaco Classic on the Web.com Tour. He took his frustrations out on Davis by throwing the cover of his putter into the chest of the caddie.
Social media outrage
Golf fans were shocked by the actions of world number 382 Gibson, with thousands having seen the footage which Davis posted on social media accompanied with the wording “I got fired”. The overall verdict was one of shock at the actions of the Australian.
“Unfortunately, my caddy was involved with a ruling on the 18th that caused me to fall from T2 to 3rd,” Gibson wrote on his Twitter account, apologizing for his moment of madness.
“My actions were less than professional and I apologize to my caddy and those that took offense to my behavior.”
The controversial moment occurred on the final hole of the Bahamas Great Abaco Classic after Gibson—who was one shot off the lead at the time—hooked his approach to the green into some rocks.
A costly ‘mistake’
Both Gibson and Davis eventually found the ball under two rocks, with the caddie picking it up in order for his player to take a drop and a one-stroke penalty. But PGA rules do not permit a caddie to pick the ball up without consent, meaning Gibson incurred a two stroke penalty. It was after playing his chip onto the green that Gibson collected his putter from the bag and threw the head cover at Davis. The penalty resulted in Gibson dropping to third place, a result which cost him $16,000.
Davis takes up the story: “We looked for the ball. I’m thinking ‘there’s some rocks here, a few other things…maybe we can find it, maybe we can hit it’.” A Tour official found it.
“Rhein and I go over, look at it, I say ‘it’s under two rocks, we got nothing’. Rhein turns around and walks to his bag as if to say ‘forget it’—clearly intending never to play the ball. Supposedly we’re a team in this game. The ball is dead, Rhein is clearly not hitting this golf ball, so I go over and pick it up. I cost my player $16,000 because I went over to a hazard and picked up a golf ball.”
A respectable finish
Gibson eventually finished two shots behind the eventual winner Adam Svensson, with Sung-jae Im splitting the pair in second place. Davis reported that all is well between him and Gibson in the aftermath of the storm over the incident.
The caddie, who maintained that he did not break any rule in picking the ball up, added: “He plays a lot better when he’s mad, we’re friends off the golf course.”