Conspiracy alert: Did a fan secretly scoop up Rory’s tee shot on Sunday at Birkdale?

July 28, 2017

Did a fan cost Rory McIlroy a few strokes last Sunday at the British Open?

A good, old-fashioned Open conspiracy is swirling on social media after the the Sun, a British tabloid, published a video that appears to show a fan plucking McIlroy’s tee shot on the par-5 15th hole out of a patch of tangled fescue and dropping it into his pocket.

McIlroy arrives at the scene moments later in search of his ball, which was never found. McIlroy returned to the tee, made a 6 on the hole and finished tied for fourth place, seven shots behind Jordan Spieth. But McIlroy was only one shot out of third, which could have netted him more than $200,000 in additional prize money.

The video clearly shows a fan finding a ball. But did it actually belong to McIlroy? That’s unclear. See for yourself, and let the conspiracy theories rage onward: