Rory McIlroy said Patrick Reed is “not living in reality” after the American tried to talk to him at the Dubai Desert Classic this week, a month after his lawyers served the world number one court papers at his home on Christmas Eve.
Reed, who is taking legal action on different fronts since joining the Saudi-backed LIV Golf breakaway series, admitted he threw a tee towards McIlroy, who had blanked him, on Monday. The Northern Irishman said he did not see it.
“Patrick came up to say hello and I didn’t really want him to,” McIlroy told a news conference on Wednesday. “From my recollection, that was it.
“I was subpoenaed by his lawyer on Christmas Eve. Trying to have a nice time with my family and someone shows up on your doorstep and delivers that, you’re not going to take that well.
“I’m living in reality, I don’t know where he’s living. If I were in his shoes, I wouldn’t expect a hello or a handshake.”
Reed, the 2018 Masters champion, said that his affiliation with LIV Golf was the reason McIlroy snubbed him.
The LIV Series, which launched in June 2022, has lured away some of the sport’s biggest names with enormous purses while those who joined the rebel circuit are no longer eligible to participate in PGA Tour events.
“We all know where it came from, being part of LIV. Since my tees are Team Aces LIV tees I flicked him one. It was kind of a funny shot back. Funny how a small little flick has turned into basically me stabbing him and throwing a tee at him,” he said.
“It’s unfortunate because we’ve always had a good relationship. But it is one of those things, if you’re going to act like an immature little child then you might as well be treated like one.”