Swedish golfer Henrik Stenson carded a solid 69 in the opening round of the WGC-CA Championship but it was his highly unusual recovery shot on the 12th on the Blue Monster course at Doral which raised more than a few eyebrows.
Stenson stripped down to the bare essentials — a pair of white boxer shorts — before wading into the mud to hack out his ball after an wayward tee shot. The watching galleries could hardly believe their eyes as the tall Swede peeled off his clothes. “Shirt, trousers, socks, shoes, hat, the lot was off,” he told the Press Association. “Because of the mud I couldn’t really afford to play in any of my clothes as they would have been a real mess down the last six or so holes so I had no option,” Stenson explained. After getting the ball back on to the fairway, Stenson eventually made a one-over par bogey on the hole when he could have dropped at least two shots by taking a drop. “If you are saving a shot, that has to be worth taking your shirt and trousers,” he added. What do you think of Stenson’s cheeky recovery shot The incident proved the main talking point on the day that Tiger Woods made his return to strokeplay golf and 32-year-old Stenson jokingly said it might offer a new avenue for sponsorships.
Tiger off the pace in strokeplay return
“Absolutely, you never know, after this I might have a new endorsement with PlayGirl or something like that.” European Ryder Cup star Stenson is playing for the $1.4 million first prize in the tournament in Florida which has an elite 81-strong field.
His recovery shot evoked memories of the last-hole drama at the 1999 British Open at Carnoustie when tournament leader Jean Van de Velde waded into the Barry Burn after taking off his shoes and socks. The Frenchman at least spared the blushes of the crowds by keeping on his clothes but he made a hash of hole and lost his chance of winning the famous major.