Frustration boils over for Shane Lowry at PGA Championship
At least he made it on to the tellybox for something.
There has been some justified grumbling about Shane Lowry not being introduced as 'Champion golfer of the year' at the US PGA Championship, this week, but the Offaly native has bigger issues to deal with.
With his county one of three to be locked down for the next two weeks, after an announcement made by An Taoiseach Micheál Martin on Friday evening, the 2019 Open champion was well on his way to shifting that cloud, for a couple of hours at least. Lowry went to -4 for the championship after picking up two birdies early in his second round.
Those birdies, on the first and fifth holes, were not shown by American broadcasters ESPN or CBS, who are sharing the coverage. Irish fans got to see him tee off at the first, but even that brought grumbles:
Eh... Please give him his full title, Mr. Announcer! @ShaneLowryGolf is the Open Champion... You gave lots of love to his partner, Brooks Koepka. We are easily offended @PGAChampionship 🙄 pic.twitter.com/wN82fXU6bV
— Des Cahill (@sportsdes) August 7, 2020
As reigning Open champion, Lowry would be entitled to being announced as 'Champion Golfer of the Year'. While 2019 US PGA champion Brooks Koepka was announced that way, his playing partner for the first two rounds had to settle for 'From Ireland, Shane Lowry'.
Lowry himself looked as if he could care less about the formalities and hat-doffing as he got off to a flying start. He was on -4 after seven holes when the achingly difficult eighth saw him record what would be the first of three bogeys in a row.
That dropped Lowry to -1 and it was soon +1 when he dropped further shots on 12 and 13. His caddie, Bo Martin, was at least spared having a full set of clubs to carry about when Lowry snapped an iron over his knee.
Shane Lowry with easily the best club snap of 2020... pic.twitter.com/rnFipx9Eno
— Harvey Jamison (@HarveyJamison) August 8, 2020
"It's not going to help, breaking a club." Paul McGinley helpfully observed on Sky Sports' coverage.
With Haotong Li of China in the clubhouse at -8, Lowry was nine adrift as he went down the final stretch of holes. To his credit, he pulled a stroke back on the 15th to finish on Even par for his two rounds. Li has not won a Major yet - his best finish was third at the 2017 Open - so he could yet come back to the field.
Still, lofty announcements on the first tee or not, Lowry will know he needs a round in the mid 60s (or lower) to give himself a chance of being in the mix for the final round, on Sunday.