Tennis star ‘sabotaged’ by fan on final hole of celeb event, Steph Curry wins

mardy fish swings

As Mardy Fish hit his final drive at the American Century Championship, a fan yelled an an inopportune time.

Golf Channel

Rory McIlroy and Robert MacIntyre weren’t the only golfers locked in a back-nine battle on Sunday.

Nearly 5,000 miles away, on the shores of Lake Tahoe, the American Century Celebrity Golf Championship also concluded. And while the quality of golf wasn’t quite what golf fans were treated to across the pond, there was still plenty of drama.

NBA all-star Steph Curry played alongside former tennis former American tennis star Mardy Fish during the final round, and their duel came down to the final hole — and not without controversy.

With Fish leading Curry by just three points on the stableford leaderboard heading to the final hole, the margin was thin. If Fish wanted to become a three-time champion of the tourney, he needed birdie on the par-5 finisher.

With honors on the final tee, Fish stepped up needing to put himself in the fairway for a look at the green in two. But at the top of his backswing, a loud noise came from the gallery.

“Somebody screamed right in his backswing on the way down,” the announcer said. “That was awful.”

Fish and his caddie immediately looked to the crowd in search of the culprit as his drive hooked low and left into the trees.

“Was it on purpose?” an announcer asked.

“Yes,” said the on-course reporter. “That was timed. That was on purpose.”

The telecast did not mention if the culprit was ever apprehended.

“That’s unacceptable,” the announcer said.

Fish managed to save par, but when Curry countered with an eagle, the Golden State Warriors guard had his first American Century victory.

To his credit, Fish didn’t make much of fuss about the incident, saying only, “It was kind unfortunate there on the tee box there on 18 to not have a full swing there, and then obviously a layup. It is what it is.”

Curry was more expansive about what had unfolded.

“You have to acknowledge it’s an unfortunate situation,” he told reporters later. “I don’t know what Mardy said about it, but I just appreciate the way he handled it. You don’t want to ever see that in a moment like that.

Mardy Fish hits a shot during the Hilton Grand Vacations Tournament of Champions in January 2023 in Orlando, Florida.
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“You have to acknowledge it’s an unfortunate situation,” he said. “I don’t even know what to call him. I don’t want to say names. But a guy trying to sabotage what was going on for a moment.

“Mardy is such a class act, and I complimented the way he bounced back to give himself a chance to make a putt on the last hole. It’s kind of hard to acknowledge that and also understand that, if I make that putt, like you said, we go to a playoff, and if he makes that putt on the green, he wins.

“It’s tough. Like I said, I hated it. In that moment, I felt just embarrassed for like all the other fans because there’s so much great love for the 99.9 percent of the other people that come into this environment and are so supportive and bring so much energy, and you got one guy that loses his mind for a second.

“I don’t know what Mardy said about it, but I just appreciate the way he handled it. You don’t want to ever see that in a moment like that.”

Zephyr Melton Editor

Zephyr Melton is an assistant editor for where he spends his days blogging, producing and editing. Prior to joining the team at GOLF, he attended the University of Texas followed by stops with the Texas Golf Association, Team USA, the Green Bay Packers and the PGA Tour. He assists on all things instruction and covers amateur and women’s golf. He can be reached at