Ho-Sung Choi has become an internet sensation after footage of his “fisherman’s swing” went viral.
In case you haven’t yet seen it, here’s a clip of the 45-year-old South Korean in action.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, fans have been quick to pick up on Choi’s idiosyncracies, resulting in him being given an invitation to play in the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in a fortnight’s time.
All fun and games, right? Rory McIlroy doesn’t think so.
Asked ahead of this week’s Farmers Insurance Open for his take on Choi’s new-found fame and opportunities, the former world No.1 had a hard time choosing his words.
Bottom line? He’s not a massive fan.
“I mean, technically his swing is good,” said McIlroy. “If you watch it up until impact, he's technically got a pretty good swing. He's obviously a pretty good player.
Rory does not seem to be the world’s biggest Hosung Choi fan! pic.twitter.com/CTRSKOWOvW— Brendan Porath (@BrendanPorath) January 23, 2019
“Whether that means he should be taking a spot away from a PGA Tour player at a PGA Tour event, I'm not so sure.”
He added: “I'm not sure a golf shot should mean that much to you that you're doing that after you hit it, like it's just trying a little too hard. You have to try hard at golf, but that's taking it to an extreme.”
In fairness to Choi, there’s a lot more to his game than a peculiar follow-through. He is a two-time winner on the Korean Tour and the highly-competitive Japan Golf Tour, most recently at the Casio World Open in November. He’s also the world No.194. Clearly, he’s no hacker.
However, you can’t help but feel that his invite to Pebble Beach is tantamount to making him the butt of a rather sad joke. Is he there on competitive merit or to give the galleries somebody to point and stare at?
Either way, with $7.6m in the prize fund, and over $1m going to the winner, it could be a life-changing week for the South Korean, who could well end up having the last laugh.