McIlroy defends Reed: "It's almost a hobby to kick him when he's down!"

Rory McIlroy has leapt to the defence of his arch LIV Golf League rival Patrick Reed after the American was caught up in a fresh rules controversy. 

McIlroy defends Reed: "It's almost a hobby to kick him when he's down!"
McIlroy defends Reed: "It's almost a hobby to kick him when he's down!"

Rory McIlroy has leapt to the defence of Patrick Reed after "tree-gate" set social media ablaze. 

There was a dramatic twist in the latest rules fiasco after one of Reed's playing partners cast doubt on how the American LIV Golf player marks his Titleist ProV1

England's Matt Wallace is said to have admitted to reporters in Dubai that Reed told him he marks his ball with with a red dot and a black line. 

Reed is said to have told a DP World Tour rules official that he always marks his ball with a black line and distinctive black arrow. 

That being said, McIlroy has defended Reed over the situation, explaining that he didn't believe Captain America was up to no good. 

McIlroy told reporters after he pipped Reed to victory at the Hero Dubai Desert Classic:

"I don't think it would be a big deal if it wasn't Patrick Reed. It's almost like, a lot of people within the game, it's almost like a hobby to sort of kick him when he's down. … It's hard, because you try to give the player the benefit of the doubt, right." 

McIlroy defends Reed:

McIlroy did admit there was an added incentive winning the tournament. 

The Northern Irishman, 33, deliberately blanked Reed on the range before the Rolex Series event at Emirates Golf Club. 

Reed decided to flick a LIV Golf branded 4 Aces GC tee towards McIlroy. 

Golf fans were left disappointed with the footage that was blown way out of proportion. Even McIlroy said it was a "storm in a teacup". 

Still, McIlroy accused Reed of "not living in reality" because the Ulsterman wasn't best pleased to receive a court summons from Captain America's lawyer Larry Klayman on Christmas Eve. 

For his part, Reed claimed that McIlroy behaved like "an immature little child". 

Side note: How amazing would it be to see these two play each other again at the Ryder Cup?!

For clarity, we should point out that Reed is not suing McIlroy, he's filed two defamation cases against members of the golf media

Klayman's legal group has also brought action against the PGA Tour and McIlroy has been called as a witness to that case.

Tiger Woods has also been called as a witness too, but has been accused of dodging his summons

McIlroy defends Reed:

McIlroy continued backing up Reed: 

"I felt it was fine. If it had been anyone else in the field it would have been a nonissue, but because of certain things in the past, people bring stuff up, which is maybe unfair in some ways. But again, it is what it is. I've stood and defended Patrick in some of the controversies. I don't feel like he was trying to get any advantage."

The DP World Tour was forced to issue a statement, clarifying that Reed handled the situation correctly on the 17th hole. 

Next page: Was Patrick Reed telling porkies?

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