One of the many things the European Tour does well is its "Beat The Pro" challenges, which take place during tournament play, seen previously at the KLM Open and now again this week at the 2018 Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship. On Thursday, 13-year-old Oscar Murphy from Northern Ireland got the chance of a lifetime in the challenge, going up against Dustin Johnson, Tommy Fleetwood and his favorite golfer and fellow countryman, Rory McIlroy.
At Abu Dhabi Golf Club's 177-yard par 3 15th hole, all three pros found the putting surface, with McIlroy's being the closest. Despite the immense pressure for Murphy, a six-handicapper, he pulled out a 3 wood and striped it:
Another thing the European Tour does well? Commentating. "What a crackerjack, like a young Rory." So perfect.
Murphy's ball settled 25 feet from the pin, good enough to be inside Fleetwood and Johnson, the No. 1 player in the world. Not too shabby. And even though McIlroy just beat him out, he and Fleetwood were both in awe when talking about Murphy's shot after the round.
"The pin was tucked on the right and he hit this three wood, just faded in to the pin,” said Fleetwood.“An unbelievable shot and me and Rory both said 'we don't have that in our locker'.”
McIlroy added:“Oscar lives here. He's from Northern Ireland so he's been following me since the 2011 PGA Championship in Atlanta.
“Every round I play here I feel like he's my little mascot. I wasn't expecting to see him on the tee there – I was a little bit surprised to see him inside the ropes but he hit a great shot.”