• The 44-year-old got into a heated argument with Mike Middlemo
• "My nerves have been rattled. I’m in shock," said Allenby
Robert Allenby’s strange season took another twist after he sacked his caddie during the first round of the RBC Canadian Open.
The 44-year-old, who also made the headlines in January when he claimed he was mugged and robbed after missing the cut at the Sony Open in Hawaii, got into a disagreement with Mick Middlemo over his club selection for an approach shot at par-5 13th at Glen Abbey, the Aussie’s fourth hole of the day.
That shot found the water and a triple-bogey followed, leading to a heated argument between the pair which resulted in Middlemo walking off and a spectator carrying Allenby’s bag for the remainder of the round.
"This is the worst incident I’ve ever witnessed as a player" - Robert Allenby
“My nerves have been rattled. I’m in shock,” Robert Allenby told SCOREGolf. “This is the worst incident I’ve ever witnessed as a player.
“I said to him (Middlemo), ‘You know this happens every week. We keep making bad mistakes and you’re not helping me in these circumstances’.
“He just lost the plot at me. He got right in my face as if he wanted to just beat me up. I said, ‘Stop being a such-and-such and calm down and get back into the game’. And he just got even closer and closer and I just said, ‘That’s it, you’re sacked’.”
At the 2007 BMW Open, a similar situation occurred for Robert Allenby when ex-caddie Michael Tritton dropped the bag, removed his bib and walked off, while another caddie quit on the four-time PGA Tour winner during the 1995 Open Championship at St Andrews.
Middlemo gave his version of events to Australian radio station SEN, saying: “We had a discussion about a club, then of course I copped the wrath of that. Then unfortunately the personal insults started.
"When the personal insults come in and you’re being called a fat so-and-so, I got a little bit peeved by it" - Mike Middlemo
“I’ve been called a bad caddie, but when the personal insults come in and you’re being called a fat so-and-so, I got a little bit peeved by it and then the third time he said it I walked up to him and basically said ‘I dare you to say that to me again’.
“He didn’t say it again. There was never going to be any violence. I was just going to put the bag down, get my gear and leave.”
Middlemo’s walk-off was spectator Tom Fraser’s gain, who volunteered his services to Allenby for the rest of the round, which the Aussie accepted.
Fraser told the PGA Tour that carrying Allenby’s bag was an ‘experience of a lifetime’, despite the player going on to card a nine-over-par 81 and later withdrawing from the tournament.
Robert Allenby :: Another saga
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