Sign up for our daily newsletter

Latest news, reviews, analysis and opinion, plus unmissable deals for bunkered subscriptions, events, and our commercial partners.

Ian Poulter has taken to Twitter to defend himself after a marshall at Gullane labelled him an “a******e” over an incident during the Scottish Open.

Quintin Jardine used his own blog to share a copy of a letter that he says he sent to tournament director Mike Stewart.

In it he describes an incident involving Poulter.

“I was marshalling at drive distance on the first hole, positioned in the rough on the left  of the fairway, when I saw a hooked drive disappear into the base of a bush not far from me,” writes Jardine.

• Rickie Fowler records one of the longest-ever drives in pro golf at Gullane

“My colleague on the other side crossed the fairway and confirmed that it was visible. He left and I stood and waited for the player. It turned out to be Mr Poulter, who arrived in a shower of expletives, and asked me where his ball was.

Ian Poulter 3

“I told him and said that I had not ventured into the bush for fear of standing on it. I wasn’t expecting thanks, but I wasn’t expecting aggression either. He told me in essence that I should have, his reasoning being that if I stood on the ball it was a free drop, whereas if he did it was a penalty. As it happened the ball was visible, he contrived a stance, and wedged it on to the fairway.”

• Daly WDs from Open after his buggy request is turned down

That, says Jardine, wasn’t the end of the matter.“He came back at me and said again that next time (there won’t be) I should go straight in there feet first. This was witnessed by one of the TV guys, who told me that I had done nothing wrong, (I knew that) and that this was typical of Mr Poulter’s behaviour.”

Scottish Open Flag

He went on to say that he felt he had a “duty” to bring the incident to the tour’s attention.

“I’m not asking for him to be fined, because I don’t see the point of that,” added Jardine. “However, I would like him to be reminded that even though most of the world knows you’re an arsehole, there’s no need to go proving it to the rest.”

• Watch Patrick Reed come a cropper in Gullane bunker

The post has since been widely shared on social media and was noticed by Poulter who, himself, took to Twitter to offer his version of events. He described himself as “extremely sad” to see that Jardine had complained about him. 

Ian Poulter 4

“I asked if he found my ball and his response was “it’s in there somewhere, I didn’t want to step on it,” wrote Poulter. “I replied “if you stand on it I can replace it without penalty but if I stand on it I will get penalized [sic].

“Venting at myself like I do sometimes I said a couple of choice words aimed at myself.

• Mickelson admits he has work to do to repair his damaged reputation

“I do not abuse Marshall’s [sic]. I may have done in my early years.

“After I played my shot I said to the Marshall “I’m not frustrated at you I just want you to know the rule incase [sic] it you come across the situation again.” He said ok thanks.”

Poulter finished the Scottish Open in a tie for 30th on nine-under-par.

WATCH – Can our man complete the Scottish Open Pro-Am without killing somebody?

author headshot

Michael McEwan is the Deputy Editor of bunkered and has been part of the team since 2004. In that time, he has interviewed almost every major figure within the sport, from Jack Nicklaus, to Rory McIlroy, to Donald Trump. The host of the multi award-winning bunkered Podcast and a member of Balfron Golfing Society, Michael is the author of three books and is the 2023 PPA Scotland 'Writer of the Year' and 'Columnist of the Year'. Dislikes white belts, yellow balls and iron headcovers. Likes being drawn out of the media ballot to play Augusta National.

Deputy Editor

More Reads

Image Turnberry green

The bunkered Golf Course Guide - Scotland

Now, with bunkered, you can discover the golf courses Scotland has to offer. Trust us, you will not be disappointed.

Find Courses