ORLANDO, Florida – Tyrrell Hatton is used to being on the receiving end of a joke. And don’t worry, he plays along well.
Whether it’s from the European Tour social media team, who recently highlighted the often combustible Hatton in their Anger Management Training segments. Or his fellow Tour peers, including Rory McIlroy, who ribbed his playing competitor on Friday after Hatton chipped in on the 14th hole, one shot after he took his frustrations out on a tee marker.
And then there’s this gem of a screenshot from Golf Twitter:
In the image, Hatton looks to be about halfway through a somersault or like he’s just been thrown out of a moving car.
“Yeah, it looks like I’ve absolutely battered and I’ve kind of slipped and gone down like that,” Hatton said, laughing. “That wasn’t the case, I was just checking for mud.”
Hatton further explained: “I’ve seen the picture. It’s not flattering. I was actually checking for mud on the ball because there was actually quite a lot of mud on the sort of under side and to the left. So, yeah, I was just kind of trying to see how much mud like there was, because obviously that affects how the ball’s going to fly.”
Hatton, who opened his title defense at the Arnold Palmer Invitational with a 5-over 77, has since shot 67-66 to rocket up the leaderboard. With favorable and soft conditions on Saturday, Hatton doesn’t expect to win, but he can’t complain about the rally.
“The beer certainly tasted better,” said Hatton, who enjoyed a few Hazy IPAs and some red wine on Friday night. “Obviously, you always sort of feel good going home when you’ve had a good finish to get through to the weekend. No one likes missing cuts, although we’re all going to miss cuts throughout your career, it’s just part of what we do. Yeah, so always good to finish strong and make the weekend.
“Thursday was a little bit of a low blow to start that way. But happy with how I’ve responded since.”