"Sign my shovel!" - Fan 'ejected' for heckling Reed at Sawgrass

Fan Heckles Patrick Reed

A spectator has reportedly been ejected from TPC Sawgrass during the opening round of the PLAYERS Championship for heckling Patrick Reed.

In a clip that has been widely shared on social media (and first noticed by the guys at No Laying Up), former Masters champion Reed is walking off the tee at the par-3 third when a fan says to him: "Hey Pat, would you sign my shovel?"

A security guard appears seconds later to tell the fan that he is being removed from the grounds. He is then seen being driven away, without protest, on a golf buggy. 

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Watch the footage below...

The remark is a reference to Reed's alleged cheating at the Hero World Challenge in December. 

The 29-year-old was accused of deliberately improving his lie in a bunker - not once, but twice. Despite multiple fellow pros calling him out for the incident, Reed denied any intent and was assessed with a two-shot penalty by the tournament officials. 

He has maintained his innocence ever since, despite being subjected to heckling at both the Presidents Cup and Sentry Tournament of Champions, and in spite of others - including Ryder Cup teammate Brooks Koepka - voicing their belief that he cheated.

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Ahead of this week's tournament, Reed tried again to play down the incident and the heat he has received from fans since the incident in December.

“I feel like, as a whole, the fans have been pretty good. You're always going to get a couple people here and there that are going to say something. That's normal, any sport you play."

The WGC-Mexico champion went on to double the hole after the fan's heckle. 

However, he won't have to endure any further interference from the fans this week after the PGA Tour announced earlier today that the remainder of the tournament would be played behind closed doors. 

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