Usually when a bird is involved on the golf course - whether it be a birdie, eagle, or albatross - it's in a positive context, but that wasn't the case Friday for Kelly Kraft.
The 29-year-old's tee shot on the par-3 14th at the RBC Heritage was heading for the green when it contacted a bird in the air and dropped into the water. The ensuing double-bogey would see Kraft finish at 1-over par through 36 holes, missing the cut by a stroke.
"It cost me the cut, most likely," Kraft told Cameron Morfit of PGATour.com. "There was a helping wind, and I hit a 7-iron, caught it perfect. It was probably 30 yards off the tee box and this giant, black bird swooped in front of it and hit it and the ball fell 20 yards short in the water. It would have been in the middle of the green. It would have been close. I got screwed."
Kraft and his playing partners, Robert Garrigus and Michael Thompson, consulted a rules official as to the proper action to take after the strike, thinking a cancel-and-replay situation was on hand. Unfortunately for Kraft, there was no such solution, as the cancel-and-replay rule only applies to permanent objects.
"The big difference is a bird is a God-made object," rules official Dillard Pruitt said. "Whereas a telephone wire is man-made. It's just a stroke of bad luck. It doesn't happen very often, but today is Friday the 13th. Freaky Friday."