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Patrick Reed has claimed that Rory McIlroy behaved like an 'immature little child' as the tee-throwing controversy that has gripped the golfing world rumbles on.
The incident took place on the driving range at the Emirates Golf Club on Tuesday when Reed approached McIlroy and his caddie.
Video footage shows that after exchanging words with McIlroy's caddie Harry Diamond, McIlroy remained on his hunkers at his golf bag and making no contact with the LIV star.
READ MORE:Rory McIlroy to come up against ten LIV Golf rebels at Dubai Desert Classic after heated incident
The American then allegedly flicked a tee in McIlroy's direction in retaliation for the snub.
Earlier today, Patrick Reed spoke to Golf Monthly and gave his side of the story:
"Because of the relationship I’ve had with Rory—let’s be honest, we’ve had some great battles at Augusta and other tournaments and our friendship’s been pretty good up until obviously joining LIV.
"I walked over there and wished Harry (Diamond, McIlroy’s caddie) ‘Happy New Year’ and then Rory because it is the first time I have seen them.
“Harry shook my hand and Rory just looked down there and was messing with his Trackman and kind of decided to ignore us.
"We all know where it came from, being part of LIV. Since my tees are Team Aces LIV tees I flicked him one.
"It was kind of a funny shot back. Funny how a small little flick has turned into basically me stabbing him and throwing a tee at him."
“He saw me and he decided not to to react. But it is one of those things. If you’re going to act like an immature little child then you might as well be treated like one.”
The incident has garnered Worldwide attention, with many seeing it as yet another symbolic example of how the PGA Tour and LIV Golf are in conflict with each other.
(Image: Getty Images)
In his pre-tournament press conference, McIlroy addressed the issues between himself and Reed:
"So I didn't see a tee coming my direction at all, but apparently, that's what happened. And if roles were reversed and I'd have of thrown that tee at him, I'd be expecting a lawsuit from him."
That line stems from the current lawsuit that Reed is apart of.
The 2018 Masters champion is one of 13 players involved in an arbitration case with the DP World Tour over sanctions imposed for playing the first LIV event last June and has also launched a defamation lawsuit against several media members and organisations.
The lawyer representing Reed in that case also subpoenaed McIlroy and Tiger Woods in regards to the players-only meeting that was held prior to the BMW Championship in August.
The subpoenas are part of a civil lawsuit filed in June by Larry Klayman which claims that Florida residents who bought tickets to PGA Tour events, or would in future, were damaged by the PGA Tour allegedly weakening fields by suspending players who joined LIV.
Asked if it was naive of Reed to expect a warm welcome given the circumstances, McIlroy told Sky Sports: “I was subpoenaed by his lawyer on Christmas Eve.
(Image: Getty Images North America)
“So of course, trying to have a nice time with my family and someone shows up on your doorstep and delivers that, you’re not going to take that well.
“I’m living in reality, I don’t know where he’s living. If I were in his shoes, I wouldn’t expect a hello or a handshake.”
While they may have been friendly off the course, the duo have done battle numerous times under the bright lights of the PGA Tour.
Perhaps the most famous encounter between the pair occurred at the 2016 Ryder Cup. During the Sunday Singles, Reed emerged victorious by one hole over McIlroy.
Ryder Cup meetings between the pair appear to be a longshot at this point. However, 'Rors' will have his chance to further show up LIV Golf when he takes on a field which includes 10 PGA Tour defectors who joined the Saudi backed golf league in the Dubai Desert Classic this weekend.
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