Golfer Kelly Kraft hits bird in flight with tee shot; misses cut by one stroke

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Kelly Kraft plays his tee shot on the tenth hole during the first round of the RBC Canadian Open golf tournament at Glen Abbey Golf Club

Kelly Kraft plays his tee shot on the tenth hole during the first round of the RBC Canadian Open golf tournament at Glen Abbey Golf Club

 (Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports / Reuters)

Kelly Kraft got a birdie, just not the one he wanted at the RBC Heritage.

Kraft’s ball hit a bird in flight on the par-3 14th hole, and the ball dropped into the water in front of the green.

The 29-year-old made double bogey and finished at 1-over par on Harbour Town Golf Links, missing the cut by a stroke.

Kraft told PGATour.com the bad break cost him the cut. He said his tee shot felt perfect and was on a good line until fate took over.

“It cost me the cut, most likely,” he said. “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’ve been in the middle of the green. It might have been close. I got screwed.”

Kraft’s group asked for a ruling, figuring the player would simply re-tee without penalty. Instead, because the bird is not a man-made object, Kraft had to play it as a ball in the water.

The Texan said a large black bird flew off unharmed after it was hit with the glancing blow.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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