Rory McIlroy hits his dad with stray shot in miserable Masters opener

The Northern Irishman had a day to forget in round one at Augusta National and even struck his watching father on the leg during a 4-over 76

Rory McIlroy and father Gerry both felt the pain during day one of the Masters.

For Rory it was mental, his hopes of a fast start scuppered by a series of mistakes that left him 11 shots off the lead after a 4-over 76.

But for Gerry, there was physical pain along with the anguish of watching his son struggle.

Rocked by dropped shots at the 5th and 6th, Rory pulled his tee shot at the 450-yard par-4 7th into the trees.

Attempting to draw his second around one of the towering pines, McIlroy didn't get the connection he wanted.

Seeing the ball drift towards spectators, Rory shouted "fore right" and watched as his ball struck a grey-haired man in a white shirt walking adjacent to the fairway.

The identity of the mystery patron? None other than Rory's dad!

Despite being caught flush on the leg, McIlroy senior did his best impression of Brian Close facing the West Indies quicks in 1976 and didn't flinch.

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On another occasion, it would have been cause for an immediate joke and a laugh between the pair. But with another opportunity to win the Masters slipping away, Rory had to get his game face on.

However, a third straight bogey dropped him to +3. And, despite birdies on the par 5s at 8 and 15, further bogeys at 9, 11 and 13 meant McIlroy slumped to his worst opening score at Augusta National.

At least Gerry did manage a smile later, telling reporters: ""I should ask for an autographed glove!"

McIlroy's first-round stats

Fairways Hit: 9 of 14

Greens In Regulation: 10 of 18

Sand Saves: 0 of 0

Putts per hole: 1.83

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